A dongle is a tiny device, generally in the basic shape of a USB flash drive, that connects into another device to give extra functionality. A wireless dongle, sometimes called a Wi-Fi adaptor, offers Wi-Fi capabilities to a device that normally isn’t Wi-Fi-capable, such as a desktop PC with no wireless network card. Dongles are helpful since you can simply move them across devices, they don’t take up much space, and the extra functionality is convenient. But while utilizing a Wi-Fi dongle, you may run into some complications. In example, it’s normal to have low wifi speeds that don’t live up to what you get on other devices in your house. Here are several reasons why your USB Wi-Fi adapter is sluggish, and what you can do about it.
1. Wireless Band Limitations
Wi-Fi devices may communicate utilizing two distinct bands. The 2.4GHz band is older and supported by most devices, but is slower and more prone to interference. Meanwhile, the 5GHz band is speedier and more dependable, but has a lower range and doesn’t operate with some older devices. While current wireless dongles tend to support both bands, your dongle can only utilize the 5GHz frequency if your router likewise broadcasts on the 5GHz band. If your router isn’t (at least) a dual-band router, then you’re stuck with the 2.4GHz channel. Thankfully, most current routers handle the 5GHz spectrum; consider a new device from one of the finest router manufacturers if you have an outdated model. MAKEUSEOF VIDEO OF THE DAY What’s the problem with the 2.4GHz band? As it turns out, it’s quite narrow. In the US, there are only only 11 channels to pick from—and even that’s misleading because each channel’s frequency overlaps with the frequencies of surrounding channels. As a result, channels 1, 6, and 11 are the only non-overlapping channels. Overlapping channels are a concern because the wireless data waves might interfere with each other, producing lost data packets that must be repeated. Resending data packets takes time, which might cause your wifi speed to decline. With a lot of interference, the decrease might be considerable. Image Credit: Kozuch/Wikimedia Commons This grows worse if you reside in a densely inhabited building, such as an apartment complex in a big city. In these instances, there are hundreds of devices all around you trying to send Wi-Fi data. Even if you’re utilizing a non-overlapping channel, broadcasts on the same channel might interfere. A wireless dongle in the 2.4GHz frequency consequently has a number of hurdles to optimal performance. If you have to utilize 2.4GHz, make sure you’ve set your router to use the newest Wi-Fi standards instead of “legacy” or “mixed” mode, which is limited for backward compatibility. However, if feasible, you should use the 5GHz band with your Wi-Fi dongle. As long as your router and dongle both support 5GHz, this is straightforward to perform. The 5GHz frequency includes 23 non-overlapping channels and isn’t as prone to interference from other devices like microwaves. See how to fix an inconsistent Wi-Fi connection for further tips
. 2. Poor Wi-Fi Dongle Positioning Image Credit:
Gareth Willey/Pexels Depending on where your wireless dongle is, the interference might occur before the signal waves ever reach your network. If your dongle is physically small, it will be right near to your desktop, which presumably has a metal casing. This can lower the dependability of the signal waves greatly. It’s not only your PC that does this—if your dongle is plugged in directly next to a desk with metal legs, you might run into the same interference problem. To partially remedy this, you may buy a USB extender, which connects into your USB port and allows you extra area to plug the real dongle in away from the source of interference. Many wireless dongles include a USB cradle in the packaging, so give it a try and see if it helps. Speaking of this, don’t forget that your computer’s placement matters too. If the PC you’re using the dongle with is in the basement, but your router is above with solid walls between them, it will impair the signal strength. A Wi-Fi dongle will be sluggish when it’s distant from the network, just like any other device.
3. Your Wi-Fi Adapter’s Lousy Internal Antenna Wireless dongles
come in two primary forms: tiny ones (which have inside antennae) and bulkier ones (which have external antennas) (which have external antennas). Compact wireless dongles, often termed nano dongles, are what most people prefer towards because they’re compact, portable, and more visually beautiful. Nobody wants a big antenna hanging out of their gadget. Plus, internal antennae are cheaper to construct, thus small dongles are more economical. An example of this is TP-N150 Link’s USB Wi-Fi Adapter. While inside antennas have gone a long way and aren’t horrible, external antennas typically give greater performance. This is because external antennas frequently have higher gain, which leads in improved signal reception. You may orient them towards the router for even better reception, and as noted above, they aren’t as close to the internal circuitry of your PC. An example of this is the TP-Link AC600. This discrepancy is one of the ways that your Wi-Fi dongle might alter the internet speed you get on your device. If you’re using an outdated nano dongle, you should update to a Wi-Fi dongle with an external antenna. They aren’t attractive, but if you rely on Wi-Fi to get work done on your desktop, they’re worth the money and are an easy method to make your Wi-Fi dongle run better.