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City WiFi Efficiency Harmed By Baby Monitors

A report published by Ofcom shows that the performance of wireless broadband networks can be seriously compromised by the use of interfering devices.

According to the study carried out by Mass consultants, these include baby monitors, audio and video senders, security cameras and even microwave ovens, all of which operate around the 2.4GHz band.

The researchers found out that Central London, where the concentration of wireless devices was highest, was the most affected by the issue of wireless congestion. This is also partly because this particular band is unrestricted and therefore understandably caused a wireless mess.

The report also highlighted the fact that up to 15 percent of wireless users could suffer of issues associated with wireless overcrowding.

Robb Topolski from PublicKnowledge is particularly critical of baby monitors and security cameras which broadcast a continuous signal. This means that "no amount of delayed networking transmission can compete with another frequency user that never shuts up".

As for why Central London is the most affected region, well, it might be that there are too many babies and CCTV/security cameras in the area.

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Our Comments

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Related Links

Interference slowing Wi-Fi access, report claims

http://www.top10-broadband.co.uk/news/2009/05/interference_slowing_wi_fi_access_report_claims/

Why your Wi-Fi is Way-Slow

http://www.publicknowledge.org/node/2160

Ofcom takes the time to explain WiFi performance problems

http://mobile.broadbandgenie.co.uk/broadband-news/ofcom-take-the-time-to-explain-wifi-performance-problems

Baby monitors killing urban Wi-Fi

http://www.pcpro.co.uk/news/252595/baby-monitors-killing-urban-wifi.html

WiFi killed by baby alarms and TV

http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/news/252620/wifi-killed-by-baby-alarms-and-tv.html

Ofcom Survey Highlights Interference Problems for UK Wireless Networks

http://www.ispreview.co.uk/story/2009/05/11/ofcom-survey-highlights-interference-problems-for-uk-wireless-networks.html

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.