Troubleshooting WiFi interference

WiFi interference

To host a SpeedQuizzing event successfully it is important that you are using the correct router and one which is not suffering interference from neighbouring equipment. As WiFi has become more congested in built up areas, it is more important that you as a SpeedQuizzing host understand how to act if problems occur.

How do I know if I have a WiFi interference issue?

Handsets connecting and then losing connection again or picture questions taking too long to transmit + temperamental connectivity in general all point to WiFi interference. However, if you’ve been unable to get a single handset to connect to the quiz hosting software then the issue is more likely to be a problem with your cable connection, your computer Firewall or the handsets being connected to the wrong network.

Problematic phones

If most handsets are behaving fine but one individual device won’t connect it is probably a problem with the phone. Don’t in this instance jump to the conclusion that there is a problem with interference as it probably isn’t the case.

What should I do if WiFi interference is affecting the smooth running of my quiz?

In an ideal world you would switch off all the neighbouring Wi-Fi routers including any belonging to your quiz venue. You would unplug any wireless security systems, microwave ovens, baby monitors, digital wireless microphones, cordless phones and any wireless credit card machines.

However, since most of these solutions are unrealistic it is imperative that you know how to quickly and calmly change the wireless channel manually in your Router’s internal settings.

Adjusting your router’s Wifi channel.

For those of you not using a Speedquizzing recomended router you should consult your router’s manual on how to adjust the WiFi channel in the router’s internal settings.

For those of you using newer Buffalo SpeedQuizzing routers with the instructions printed on the side, you should follow the troubleshooting instructions on there.

For those of you who are using older Speedquizzing recommended routers there is a shortcut from within the SpeedQuizzing host software which take’s you directly to the page where you adjust your WiFi settings in your router via a web browser. You will however need to know your router’s administrator name and password to enter the settings.

Click the Green router Icon from within the SpeedQuizzing software.

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Click adjust my WiFi Channel.

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Click the blue Adjust my WiFi settings now link and enter the administrator user name and password for your router if asked.

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And there you have the Wifi settings page.

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The setting we are interested in is the section labelled Wireless Channel in the 2.4ghz wireless section. Modern routers have also have a 5ghz section which you should ignore for now.

This will usually default to either Channel 1 or Auto.

Auto should result in a router automatically selecting the clearest radio channel. However unfortunately this is not always 100% reliable. In an instance where you have established that the  Auto setting is not providing a clear reception then you should manually select one of the router’s main channels and “Apply settings“.

The main channels, are considered to be Ch1, Ch6 and whatever the highest available number is (usually 11, 12 or 13 depending where in the world you are). The intermediate channels such as Ch4 and Ch9 should only be tried as a last resort after the main channels have been tried to no avail.

Because you don’t know what channels are currently interfering you need to take a stab in the dark. Start by selecting Ch12 (11 if it doesn’t go that high). Apply settings and see if this is any better. If it doesn’t fix it try Ch6 and if still no good try Ch1 (If you haven’t already). Only if these three options fail to improve the situation should you resort to intermediate channels such as 3, 9, etc.

Changing the channel will cause some handsets to disconnect and on rare occasions handsets may jump to an alternative WiFi network. The worst case scenario is players might need to rejoin the Quiz WiFi network and restart the app, but more often than not it is just a case of waiting 20 seconds and clicking Connect on the apps to rejoin.

Be prepared.

The important thing is that you don’t wait until you have a problem to find out how to adjust your WiFi channel. Be prepared, know how to enter the router’s settings and always have the router’s admin and password details close to hand. Practice changing your channels and remember that if you work at multiple venues then it may be the case that one channel suits one place and a different one suit’s another.