Question Paying for 45Mbps. Hard-wired connection fine, Wifi under 10Mbps

joeytheg

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As the subject above says, I am paying AT&T for 45Mbps a month internet service. My wifi connection is disturbingly slow. Speed tests from multiple sources show anywhere between 4Mbps and 10Mbps (wifi) and 35 to 45Mbps (connected via ethernet). I am aware there can be discrepancies between what I'm paying for and actual speeds. I can live with the wired speeds, but these WiFi speeds are not acceptable.

I'd appreciate any help. But please keep all of what I'm about to write in mind. I have been troubleshooting this for several weeks. Doing everything in terms of suggestions that are listed on AT&T forums, other internet forums, google searches, calling AT&T personally, having a technician appointment, etc. I've taken deep dives into knowing my way around the AT&T gateway/router ... trying different settings, changing channels, bands, etc. I know all about interference causes (microwaves, baby monitors, walls, etc.) and what to do to alleviate them from being the slow speed culprits. I tried using single SSID's utilizing both the 2.4 band and 5.0 band. I've separated each band into their own SSID. I bought an extender, it's set up correctly, working fine, except for poor speeds. In short, assume I've tried it. But I'm sure I haven't tried EVERYthing. Which is why I'm reaching out to higher level expertise of somewhere like here at Tom's Hardware.

An AT&T technician came out and scratched his head. He said he fixed any outside issues on the local poles to have a better matched "bonded pair", changed ports, swapped out different gateway/modem/routers, etc. Used his own speed tests again and again from every corner in my home and outside and couldn't figure out why I'm having the large speed discrepancies. His recommendation? Get your money back from AT&T and try a different provider. Yes. That was the suggestion from a representative of the company.

I'm about to take his advice and drop AT&T, but I decided to take one last shot here in the hopes someone could save me the hassle of changing internet providers. Although at this point I'm ready to pull the trigger and try a different ISP after liking AT&T services and being a customer now for over 14 years. Like I said earlier, this is simply not acceptable. I'm just a breath away from being done with paying for something I'm not receiving.

Apologies in advance if my tone is coming off a bit harsh.

Thanks in advance for any help.
 

USAFRet

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If the wired connection is giving you the actual speed you pay for, the ISP is not the problem.

The WiFi is between your devices and the router.
And the only real WiFi performance is direct line of sight, in the same room.
 
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If its just the wifi speed then it has nothing to do with your connection itself. What is the model of the modem/router you have? If you are using their supplies router usually ISP routers are completely trash and it would be better to disable it as a router, make it only be a modem and then get a good standalone router from ASUS, Netgear, etc

Chances are its either the router itself , or you have a very noisy electromagnetic environment. Wifi Analyzer Apps are available for both Android and iOS, I would suggest you download an app on your phone and see how many networks are around you. If there are a lot you can either try and change channels, for 2.4 the only non overlapping channels are 1,6,11 so going on anything other then those wont help and may make it worse. Another problem can be too many actually devices, which also will degrade speeds on a network.
 
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Mr.Spock

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since wired performance has ruled out ATT, you should just set up your own AP rather than using an extender. run the AP off a separate SSID via ethernet - why extend a bad SSID from the gateway?

The other thing you can try is to verify encryption is WPA2-AES (WPA3 also works) on your existing Wifi (anything else is weak and reduces performance). Any wifi analyzer app can help (Netgear has one that's decent).

P.S. the extender adds latency so connecting to it halves your throughput.

As the subject above says, I am paying AT&T for 45Mbps a month internet service. My wifi connection is disturbingly slow. Speed tests from multiple sources show anywhere between 4Mbps and 10Mbps (wifi) and 35 to 45Mbps (connected via ethernet). I am aware there can be discrepancies between what I'm paying for and actual speeds. I can live with the wired speeds, but these WiFi speeds are not acceptable.

I'd appreciate any help. But please keep all of what I'm about to write in mind. I have been troubleshooting this for several weeks. Doing everything in terms of suggestions that are listed on AT&T forums, other internet forums, google searches, calling AT&T personally, having a technician appointment, etc. I've taken deep dives into knowing my way around the AT&T gateway/router ... trying different settings, changing channels, bands, etc. I know all about interference causes (microwaves, baby monitors, walls, etc.) and what to do to alleviate them from being the slow speed culprits. I tried using single SSID's utilizing both the 2.4 band and 5.0 band. I've separated each band into their own SSID. I bought an extender, it's set up correctly, working fine, except for poor speeds. In short, assume I've tried it. But I'm sure I haven't tried EVERYthing. Which is why I'm reaching out to higher level expertise of somewhere like here at Tom's Hardware.

An AT&T technician came out and scratched his head. He said he fixed any outside issues on the local poles to have a better matched "bonded pair", changed ports, swapped out different gateway/modem/routers, etc. Used his own speed tests again and again from every corner in my home and outside and couldn't figure out why I'm having the large speed discrepancies. His recommendation? Get your money back from AT&T and try a different provider. Yes. That was the suggestion from a representative of the company.

I'm about to take his advice and drop AT&T, but I decided to take one last shot here in the hopes someone could save me the hassle of changing internet providers. Although at this point I'm ready to pull the trigger and try a different ISP after liking AT&T services and being a customer now for over 14 years. Like I said earlier, this is simply not acceptable. I'm just a breath away from being done with paying for something I'm not receiving.

Apologies in advance if my tone is coming off a bit harsh.

Thanks in advance for any help.
 
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joeytheg

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Thank you USAFRet, richiestang_78, and Mr.Spock for the very helpful answers.

I have purchased a separate router and all is working well. Removed the extender too. Quick question...

I know I can use the LAN ports on the router to connect any PC/device. Should I now NOT use any of the modem's open LAN port(s) to connect a PC/device(s) in order to get "extra" wired connections to any PC/device(s)?

I just tried it and it seems to work fine on one PC but wanted to ask in case this is not a good idea.

Thanks in advance.
 

USAFRet

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Thank you USAFRet, richiestang_78, and Mr.Spock for the very helpful answers.

I have purchased a separate router and all is working well. Removed the extender too. Quick question...

I know I can use the LAN ports on the router to connect any PC/device. Should I now NOT use any of the modem's open LAN port(s) to connect a PC/device(s) in order to get "extra" wired connections to any PC/device(s)?

I just tried it and it seems to work fine on one PC but wanted to ask in case this is not a good idea.

Thanks in advance.
If that device has multiple LAN ports, it is a modem/router.

Yes, you can use any of those LAN ports.
 

Mr.Spock

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if your use the LAN ports on the old gateway in conjunction with the LAN ports on your new router => the devices on the gateway will not see the devices on the new router since the 2nd router creates its own subnet - only important if you need to share files or printers etc. this is why I suggested an AP and not a router (you can just run the router in AP mode also)
 

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