back to article Boffins explain why it takes your Wi-Fi so long to connect

You'd think by now that Wi-Fi has been around so long, nobody could get it wrong, right? Wrong, according to Changhua Pei of Tsinghua University and collaborators from Tencent and the Tsinghua National Laboratory for Information Science and Technology: Wi-Fi implementations vary so much that 45 per cent of attempted …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Machine learning algorithm

    Yes of course. The solution to all problems this year.

    At least until the speculative bubble pops and we enter the next AI winter.

    1. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

      Re: Machine learning algorithm

      Shanghai Jiao Tong University can use AI to determine whether or not the access point is beautiful.

  2. Tom 64


    If my phone was allowed to access every wifi access point on the planet, the boffin's suggestion would certainly cut connection times. Back in the real world my phone is only ever likely to have permission to connect to exactly one access point at any given location.

    Money well spent? I think not. They should simply have given the cash to me. I could have bought myself a few beers and pissed it up the wall for them.

    1. JeffyPoooh

      Re: Well...

      @Tom 64 "...exactly one access point..."

      You've never been to JustAboutAnywhereIn, Asia?

      Any airport departure area will be lined with food vendors offering Chicken On A Stick, and nearly all of them will have free and unfettered WiFi on offer. Dozens and dozens of totally wide open hotspots. The exact opposite of any Western airport.

      Any hotel window will look out into a teaming city. A quick scan will stop at 100 hotspots, about a third of which will be wide screaming open. Another scan, another 100.

      It's almost sad to return to the Western world, run by mean spirited people and lawyers. A paucity of free and open WiFi. It's horrific. ;-)

  3. MrDamage Silver badge

    hold your phone upside down

    WiFi was invented by the CSIRO in Australia. So it stands to reason if you want a quick connection, hold your phone upside down to invert the signal, so it's transmitting and receiving in its natural format.

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      ... so, if I'm anywhere near the equator, I need to hold it sideways?

    2. eldakka

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      Actually, the pauses are there to allow people time to offer it a beer.

    3. Adam 1

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      ¡ǝɹoɟǝq uɐɥʇ ɹǝʍoןs uǝʌǝ ʇɔǝuuoɔ ʇsnɾ sƃuıɥʇ 'ƃuıɥʇʎuɐ ɟı puɐ ɹǝpun uʍop ʇı pǝıɹʇ ʇsnɾ I ˙ɹǝɥʇoq ʇ,uoᗡ

      1. chivo243 Silver badge

        Re: hold your phone upside down

        Nice one +1 isn't enough...

    4. sanmigueelbeer

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      > WiFi was invented by the CSIRO in Australia.

      802.11a radio protocol was invented by Australian CSIRO.

    5. Michael Strorm Silver badge

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      @ MrDamage ; Interoperability problems can be minimised by ensuring your SSID is always set to "Bruce".

    6. ThomH

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      WiFi was invented in Australia about as much as email was invented by Shiva Ayyadurai.

    7. john.w

      Re: hold your phone upside down

      Wi-Fi was not invented by CSIRO, they developed and hold a patent on a radio technique to reduce multipath problems and have sued many Wi-Fi equipment manufactures. So in fact they created a solution that got over the problem of holding it up side down in the northern hemisphere.

  4. eJ2095

    Suppose its better

    Then apples you are holding it wrong line....

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    5 - 10 seconds wait...

    OMG, my life is like totes over.

    1. The First Dave

      Re: 5 - 10 seconds wait...

      Nice try, but I know you faked that, 'cos you didn't include "actually", but did have time to use an actual comma (see what I did there?)

  6. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Generalise much?

    "The researchers collected their data from the WiFi Manager Android and iOS app."

    So what they're telling us is they wrote a WiFi Manager app that doesn't work very well. Or am I reading it wrong?

  7. tiggity Silver badge

    android wifi is a bit iffy anyway

    And of course there's "free public wifi" points that instead of being vanilla no credentials required wifi want you to give away some details at a web browser page e.g. McDonalds UK want your phone number to send you an SMS to receive logon details (& they get to (screw DPA) slurp your phone number)

    It is easy (depends on android version, phone config) to miss as often just a tiny notification about need to visit web page, most android configs do not auto open & bring to foreground the web page logon.

    So, assuming user does not notice the need to fill in something at a web browser,or does not wnat to, then these dubious "free access points" really kill wifi access time big time.

    Caveat, I'm not a McDonalds customer just occasionally get bored out and about in town and if I feel like a bit of web surfing see how much personal information "free" wifi points want to steal to decide if I want to bother with using them

  8. juice

    I don't suppose

    Anyone's got a list of which router chipsets are the most reliable/fastest?

    1. The First Dave

      Re: I don't suppose

      No, but tell us which one you've got so we can all snigger

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: I don't suppose

      Suspect a key factor is whether the AP is using auto channel selection or not...

      When I set up WiFi networks I tend to select a frequency for each AP. Now when a client scans it doesn't encounter the problem of the AP - it's just discovered, disappearing because it has decided to switch channel...

      The problem with auto channel selection is a greater problem ie. can introduce greater delays, on 5Ghz due to the much larger pool of available channels...

      This factor alone is sufficient to cause noticeable differences between connection times in public and private networks. Interestingly, the article isn't clear about the configuration of the AP's, so I suspect they used the 'default' settings.

  9. AbeSapian

    Great! So Maybe We Get A Faster Connection Time

    But most of the time is spent in actual communications of actual useful data. How much will that really improve throughput?

  10. WilfForrow

    Need Google's help again

    Surely if Google writes Android, it can build up a database of best wifi's? It already knows your location just from the wifi you're connected to? Don't need AI for that, just 'I'.

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