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What can you do when your connection is slow?

It’s Monday, the children are starting to roll in and you’ve already prepped your area. Scanner plugged in: check; Unsupervised Scan window opened: check; and on top of that, everyone remembered their cards. With all of your i’s dotted and t’s crossed, you waive the child up to the front desk to begin the day’s sign-ins only to realize that after about 10 minutes, your internet-based system doesn’t seem to be registering much, if anything at all. It’s happening again- the system is slowing down right when you need it most; or is it?

One of the common issues that we see over at COMET is that many of our users don’t realize the impact that this influx of users can have on their organization’s internet connection. The above example is for taking attendance, but internet connection speed can impact any software that runs using the internet, impacting the speed of functions such as database searches and reporting. Nowadays, almost everyone has a device that can connect to the internet via Wi-Fi. All those devices connecting to the internet is going to affect the overall speed. This means that when a group of children come in and all of their devices connect to the internet at once, you’ve just split your connection by as many children as there are standing before you. This alone is enough to cause a delay between each scan, meaning that your connection is throttled and can cause some of your scanner data to not register into the system.

What can you do to prevent this?

The first thing that we suggest to our customers experiencing this problem is to do a speed test at www.speedtest.net or do a Google search on “Speed Test” use the service offered by them (see image below). We advise you do this at a time when there are no children in the building and then again when the children start to arrive. If you see slower speeds after they’ve shown up, you’ll know that the internet connection is being throttled…

So, what now? If you’re noticing that the connection is slowing down there are a few things that you can look in to. First, reach out to your IT department to see if they would be able to allocate a dedicated portion of the connection to your main PC.  They may even want to look into getting a Dual-Band Wi-Fi router that allows for two separate channels for your internet connection. This way you could have a dedicated Wi-Fi channel for the members (2.4ghz) and one specifically for the staff (5ghz).

Second, you may also want to contact your service provider to see what speeds they would recommend for the number of users you have accessing the internet at one time, in combination with the activities that they are using the Wi-Fi for (streaming media, web browsing, etc.). They have staff dedicated to learning about your operations and recommending the best solution for your needs.

Third, if you’re a COMET customer, contact support! We’d be happy to talk with you in more detail about any difficulties you’re having with internet speed - we’re here to help.

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