Residential managed WiFi 101: start here
We are connecting more devices and streaming more media in homes, and it's putting our WiFi to the test. It's no wonder that 37% of US broadband households have reported problems with their WiFi network in the last year. Ultimately, consumers are facing a dilemma: How can I enjoy using my plethora of smart home devices while ensuring my network supports them? The solution is Residential Managed WiFi.
What is Residential Managed WiFi?
Residential Managed WiFi (cloud-enabled WiFi) is a remote maintenance and support model for home WiFi networks. Managed WiFi for the home allows consumers and their service providers to remotely troubleshoot and improve network performance, utilizing cloud-based monitoring and administrative tools. A managed WiFi solution typically has the following capabilities:
- View and manage access points and gateways (e.g. your router)
- View devices connected on the network
- View signal strength for devices on the network
- View bandwidth consumption for devices on the network
- Manage WiFi extenders
- Have improved levels of security for the WiFi network
- Get performance and security alerts
- Manage guests on the WiFi network
The notion isn't entirely new; enterprises have been using cloud-managed WiFi for some time; see Ruckus Wireless, Cisco Miraki, and Extreme's Smart OmniEdge. These solutions (which also have sophisticated QoS features and things businesses need like branded guest WiFi pages) help qualified, IT personnel and managed service providers better support enterprise networks.
Back to the home. Home networks are becoming just as complicated and device-heavy as that of the enterprise— our very own CEO has 62 devices on his home network! The thing is, unlike the enterprise space, consumers need easy, simple, affordable solutions that don't require an IT certification to navigate. Plus, homes have some unique use cases, such as the need for Parental Control settings and smart TV streaming optimization during peak watching hours.
How can Residential Managed WiFi help?
In addition to acting as a home's 24/7 IT monitoring and support service, a Residential Managed WiFi service can also help homes strengthen the WiFi network. A technology-forward cloud WiFi management solution will analyze network data to proactively help subscribers optimize their network. For example, a cloud managed WiFi solution can give clear guidance on how to address a poor WiFi signal in a certain part of the home, or indicate when there is WiFi interference on a given channel. The managed WiFi service provider may be able advise the home on how to fix the problem ("A WiFi extender is recommended") , or even auto-magically fix the problem before the home notices it's there ("We've blocked a malicious IP address from communicating with your device.").
How do I get Residential Managed WiFi?
Simply put, there aren't many comprehensive managed WiFi solutions on the market for homes— yet. Minim is proud to say we are one. And if you're a Comcast subscriber, you might find XFi is a good solution, too.
However, most other consumer-focused WiFi management services of today hone in on particular use cases, e.g. Parental Controls, mesh device control, and network security. Plus they also require that additional hardware run on your network. Here's what you might find in a search for these:
- Parental controls: Disney Circle, Roqos Core
- Security: Cujo AI, Norton Core
- Mesh WiFi management: Eero, Plume, Google WiFi
The result? Consumers are left to fend for themselves, cobbling together solutions that ultimately make it harder for their broadband service provider to help. This is precisely the problem that Minim is tackling .
Minim's mobile app
In one app, Minim empowers consumers and broadband service providers to simply manage and secure the home WiFi network. Minim empowers its users to: manage devices on the network, diagnose common network issues, review signal strength and bandwidth consumption by device, manage home router settings, get security alerts, set parental controls, and much more.
Interested in learning more about Minim? Let us know.