Attending an event or conference and not being able to connect to the WiFi provided by the organizers is beyond frustrating. If you are an exhibitor or keynote speaker dependent on such a connection and its slow, unresponsive, or worse non-existent, it is not only frustrating but can negative effects on your career or business. These are just some of the reasons event organizers are placing a lot of emphasis on being able to provide reliable WiFi for conferences.
Supply to Meet Demand
The single biggest reason as a guest or host that the Internet connection provided is slow and unresponsive has to do with high demand and undersupply. Many have fallen victim to this when providing event internet that they do not cater for how many people will be needing to be connected. Many organizers work on the average that for every person there will be two and a half devices needing to be connected. At festivals, for example, 10% of the attendees will be online at any given moment. Often this has led to massive undersupply of Internet services in the past and when festival-goers need to connect to the Internet to top up payment cards, this could be disastrous.
No Corner Left Uncovered
The assumption that good WiFi should be provided is so ingrained within the industry now that when discussions about WiFi crop up at the event they tend to be negative. We assume that the Internet connection will be strong and fast when that is not the case complaints begin to roll in. Here another issue arises in the venue having black spots or areas with slower than average speed. Providing wall to wall coverage is another important consideration and often this requires a site survey.
WiFi has been typically provided at 2.4 GHz which was initially thought to be more than up to the task. However, as more people have devices that can connect to WiFi networks which compete for bandwidth and the ever-present concrete wall 2.4 GHz looked underpowered. This was soon realized and a new standard of 5 GHz was implemented which proved better at passing through concrete walls. Many Internet providers specializing in events will provide Dual-band allow for the use of both frequencies, solving many of the old issues by routers typically using only one frequency.
By providing a comprehensive WiFi network organizers can further shape the connection to their needs so that heavy users of the connection, those using conference calls, for example, do not impact those just looking to check emails and social media accounts.
Get the Speed Right
A bad and slow Internet connection is bad for business. This is a hard reality needing acceptance. In order to provide a good Internet connection that is good for business, speed is key. As industry standard been able to provide 10 Mbps per every 100 people would be ideal for a high usage crowd. For smaller events, organizers should look first to provide 2 Mbps per 100 users. You can determine the internet speed with this popular online tool: speedtest.net Here have an understanding of who is attending and why it will help determine what speed you would need to provide. Tip: How to see real-time internet speed on Android.
Connecting with Bonded Connections
For conferences that require the capability to broadcast or live streams require an uninterrupted Internet connection. Fortunately, there is a way to pull this off with a bonded connection. By using software-defined WANs (Wide Area Networks) stable, fast, and the uninterrupted Internet can be provided. Simply put this works by using multiple different connections, whether DSL, Fibre, or even Cellular together, or bonded, to prevent disconnections, latency issues, and packet loss.
More and more the need for the conference industry to mirror the connected world increases on a daily basis. This has come with numerous growing pains, however, the technology now exists that allows for providing a fast and stable Internet connection. More than that, bandwidth-intensive operations such as live streaming can now be pulled off seamlessly.