Friday, February 15, 2013

Because You Can Never Have Enough Wi-Fi, There’s A Free WiFi Signal Troubleshoot App

The combination of cell phone data plans and Wi-Fi on smart phones and tablets is truly a hallmark of the digital age. Wi-Fi is abundant. Most internet service providers offer Wi-Fi access with their service, and free or nominally priced Wi-Fi is available in millions of locations.

What happens when Wi-Fi at home or office goes a little wonky? Who you gonna call? Wi-Fi Busters? Instead, opt for free and try WiFi Signal, the Mac app that monitors Wi-Fi and troubleshoots your connection.

WiFi Signal is a Mac Menubar app. Click it and look at a drop down list of Wi-Fi connection details; more details than you’ll get from Apple’s network connection preference pane.

WiFi Signal

Most of us just connect to the nearest Wi-Fi signal and don’t worry about what goes on behind the airwaves. WiFi Signal gives you information to make it easier to troubleshoot a weak signal.

It monitors SSID, BSSID, channel, transmit rate, noise levels, and the all important Signal-to-Noise Ratio. WiFi Signal can detect new networks with a signal that overlaps yours and suggest an alternate channel.

The only negative is that the automatic recommendations are for the 2.4GHz bandwidth only. A few dollars gets you the same company’s WiFi Explorer with more features, including support for 802.11a, b, g, and n wireless networks, both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency bands, and 20 and 40 MHz channels.

WiFi Explorer

If the free version does the job for you, great. I opted for the WiFi Explorer option which has more features and scans more networks.