Top 10 Problems with Wi-Fi Access at Events, Part 2
Aug 26, 2011 by DeDe Mulligan
In Part 1, we highlighted 5 of the more common problems with Wi-Fi networks.  Today, we continue our discussion about the remaining potential problems with WiFi and offer suggested solutions to overcome bandwidth and connectivity issues.
#6: Not enough time was given to install and test the Wi-Fi network

It is important that the Wi-Fi network be accessible and fast. The only way to adequately do this is to test the mobile applications and social network feeds of a typical attendee x 500 or 5,000, depending on the size of the group. This may take days to complete. Besides knowing the size of the room, test how the signal will reflect from the walls and be absorbed by the audience. Still not convinced that your event will have reliable wireless connectivity for 500 to 5,000 attendees? enterprise wireless network routerRent an enterprise wireless network router from AV Event Solutions to get peace of mind.
#7: No idea how many attendees are going to connect to the Wi-Fi network at the same time

If you rent iPads, tablets, or laptops, and have applications preloaded onto these devices, you will have some idea how many mobile devices are on the network. But what about smartphones? Yes, you need to include those as well. Will your attendees have a laptop, smartphone, and iPad? It is possible, and if it is a tech conference, very probable.

The easiest way to handle this, is to make this question part of your registration process. If you are going to rent Tablet PCs, you already have that number answered. But make sure to ask if the attendees have a smartphone or if they are bringing their laptop. Encourage them leave their laptop at home, as it will take unnecessary bandwidth and let them know the tablet should be enough for purposes of the conference. 

#8: Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) isn’t configured properly. 

Okay, okay I have to get technical for a minute, but it will make sense, so stay with me. DHCP allows the temporary IP addresses for your devices to connect to the router correctly. Most access points only allow a maximum of 253 addresses (which means if you a conference of 500 people, only half would be able to use the Internet). However, the DHCP can be configured with up to 16,000 addresses which is usually suitable for most conferences and conventions. Again, knowing the system and how it is configured is one of the keys to your success.

#9: There just isn’t enough bandwidth.

I lied…I have to explain another technical term but it can be explained in an easy way. Think of bandwidth as a pipe. Now think of a really narrow pipe and think about how fast a gallon of water could be pushed through that pipe. Now think about a really, really big pipe, like something in the oil fields of Alaska and visualize that same gallon of water. You get it…the really big pipe is going to push the water through very fast while the small pile is going to be slow…actually really slow when compared to the big pipe. Well, that is bandwidth.

The infrastructure at the hotel, conference center, or convention hall, has to be big enough to support all the activity going on with attendees including video streaming and downloading. Make sure you know what your attendees are going to be doing and what the bandwidth of your venue is. If in doubt, go for the larger bandwidth with a wireless network array rental.

AV Event Solutions is here to help you with your association, training, and corporate bandwidth rental needs and audio visual rentals. We are available to work with your event management services and IT staff to make your event a great success. Give them a call today!

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