Monsters university

Everything you need to know about wireless data transmission

Wireless connectivity has many advantages for small businesses. Setting up a wireless network is not as easy as setting up a LAN network. In addition, WLAN is more expensive than LAN. However, the long-term benefits may justify the initial outlay.

WLAN data transfer

You keep customer data, internal workflow data, employee data, and various other types of data in company storage and use it whenever needed. The transmission rate being low slows down the network and this delays the delivery of work.

The data transmission rate depends on your ISP. But the transfer speed for WLAN depends on the wireless standard and some other factors. I will discuss the factors that affect the data transfer rate for a corporate WLAN.

Environment and flow

Your desktop environment affects throughput. Possible sources of interference and the distance between two client machines are atmospheric factors. These factors affect the transfer rate.

Place two machines exactly 2 meters on either side of the access point and observe the throughput. Let’s say the flow is X, now increase the distance to 3 meters and observe the flow again. If it falls, the previous placement was correct.

WiFi devices themselves work as interference. Those using wired devices and those using wireless devices get different speeds. Wall materials and light fixtures can also affect throughput.

What is the solution ?

There is no instant solution to improving the performance of your WLAN and increasing throughput. If wired Ethernet is used, throughput issues are unlikely to occur. You can quickly connect two client devices using a gigabit switch and two gigabit Ethernet NIC adapters, and ensure that the throughput is the same for both client devices.

But for WLAN you need a strictly controlled atmosphere. A small business may find it extremely difficult to create such an atmosphere.

Wi-Fi standard

A business has an array of choices when it comes to selecting a Wi-Fi standard. That being said, they should choose carefully as the right standard can increase throughput and speed up data transfer rate.

We can safely identify 802.11n as an obsolete standard; 802.11ac fares much better, not only in terms of the speed it offers (1.3 Gb/second), but also in terms of ease of use and business friendliness. John Anderson, Fluke Network’s chief planner, admitted that 40% of speed is consumed by factors such as “how many people are on the network, and others being environmental.”

The first wave of 802.11ac, experts say, is a solution to this problem because it brings with it 256-QAM, whose constellation diagram involves 256 points of quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM). 256-QAM is considered a higher-order QAM, which provides a large amount of data – almost 34% more than AP.

transmission method

You must select a transmission method. Your choices are Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS) and Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS). In QAM-256, the constellation points are located close to each other, which equates to a higher bit error rate. The signal-to-noise (SNR) technique is used to increase the signal energy and reduce the bit error rate.

The FHSS method works with an SNR of 18 dB while the DSSS technique works with an SNR of 12 dB. An effective modulation technique does not require a high decibel signal-to-noise ratio.

Making a choice between FHSS and DSSS is difficult as both have advantages and disadvantages. DSSS mode is suitable for installations requiring a high transmission rate or data-intensive applications.

The data transmission range for FHSS is small, that’s why a company needs more FHSS devices. But it is a costly affair because FHSS devices are expensive. There are other transmission methods such as infrared (IR) technology, but these are rarely used. In my opinion, a small business must first sort out its priorities and choose the mode of transmission accordingly.


There are many aspects to wireless connectivity that businesses, especially small businesses, need to understand. This is possible thanks to the practice of WiFi. The discussion in this article can help them in this quest.

Tablet user photo via Shutterstock