Dear Loyal Customer,
Well Hello again!
Firstly, Happy New Financial year. The time has just flown by and here we are July 2018 already. As you may already know we have discovered that our newsletters have not been going out properly and many customers have not been receiving it, so we are now re sending May Newsletter while we work on creating another tantalising installment to send later this month, just in case you were wondering where we had got to. Our apologies should you have already received this one.
So it’s now time for another exciting installment in the rapid advancing world of technology! This time I am starting with WiFi which is so much a part of our daily lives, from free WiFi at the coffee shop to WiFi through our entire homes and offices. Of course not all WiFi systems are created equal and the speed and reliability is a critical factor – which leads me to my next article…
The product that has really impressed me is the Ubiquiti Unifi wireless access point range. Now you know I am always going on about the importance and benefit of wired devices but wireless definitely has its place and it is so convenient and becoming more and more reliable – when installed and used properly.
The best network system has a mixture of wired and wireless devices and this is what I like so much about the Ubiquiti system. They utilise the powering of the devices over a Cat5 or Cat6 data cable so that from your main router/modem a direct line is run to the WiFi access point, it is powered remotely so no power point is required, then the access point covers a large area with high speed Wifi. (This overcomes the problem with WiFi extenders which use a wireless link back to base, as this halves the WiFi speed on the extender)
The best place for a WiFi access point is up high as this gives much better coverage and Unifi have a range of disc style access points that can go on the ceiling or high on the wall. They also have in-wall access points that fit into a normal wall plate for times where the access point needs to be invisible.
The simplicity of this system is that if you use all Ubiquiti devices it forms a mesh network so that as you move through the house or offices it moves you seamlessly from one access point to the next.
Designing the system for cabling and wireless will get you a much better result so please come in for some advice and tips to help you get it right first time.
A very good tip from my IT professional, when setting up any network and wireless access points: If you use the same brand throughout USUALLY they connect easily and stay connected! And it transfers you seamlessly from access point to access point as you roam through the building. Reliability is important.
Who Owns the App??
Did you know that many of the Apps that come loaded on your Smart TV and Smart Devices are not owned by you? Most of us think that if the TV comes with these items and features then it is part of the package and you own it – BUT Apps are different. The TV manufacturer has a license agreement with the App provider and sometimes they have a falling out and if that happens the App can simply disappear off your TV. The other thing is the App provider goes broke or decides to no longer support (fix and update) the App and it stops working.
Some TV’s that used to support Netflix, Stan, Freeview, Foxtel Play simply stopped working or the App disappeared off the list.
Not long ago, Pandora music streaming was withdrawn from Australia and as a result all the “Pandora” compatible AV amplifiers and TV’s, which had Pandora all set up and working, the App simply stopped.
The important thing here to remember is that these Apps are free but access to Apps will change and we the consumer have little or no control over this.
Most of us have experienced or heard of the troubles caused when a major operator such as Microsoft or Apple decides to “Upgrade” their systems, whether we like it or not. Similarly, we are finding older devices such as iPads and tablets that are in good working order but the manufacturer decides they are no longer going to support that product. This is very frustrating especially when a device is “old” after 7 years, which for many of us seems a rather short life for an appliance, especially when it’s in good working order.
This problem is compounded when a free or paid App on the older device you have suddenly stops working for no apparent reason. It turns out that when an overall system upgrade occurs, and the App writers have to upgrade their App to suit the new system, the older unsupported devices no longer work with the upgraded App.
I personally did not realise what a minefield this can be until this last month when Microsoft did a major upgrade that caused a number of issues with remote access to security systems. On top of that Apple stopped supporting the iPad2 which a number of my clients have and caused some issues. Fortunately, the App writers got straight onto this and worked out a “fix” so normal operation was restored.
Phil’s Soap Box:
I think it is important that we all become more aware of this sort of recurring problem with programs and systems and perhaps if enough of us complain, then a better solution may be found. In the past it was standard operating procedure for any new device to be backward compatible with older technology. Unfortunately, this is no longer the case. Sometimes it is obvious this is not practical, but in many cases, with a little more effort, new tech can still work with old tech. The baby boomer generation is the largest consumer force in Australia today, so I think it is important that we communicate in volume to the large corporations who covet our dollars. If we don’t tell them loudly enough what we want, then it won’t be important to do anything about it. Imagine if we all told Apple and Microsoft that we would boycott any purchases of their new products for 6 months until they supported iPad 2’s again and stopped upgrading our PC’s without our OK! (I know it is impractical but it is an interesting thought that we actually have the numbers to make them listen if we all got together on this!) By the way – try finding a complaints department number or email for Microsoft – there isn’t one!!
OK that’s enough whingeing from me – I promise more positive stuff next time!!
Phil and the Sunshine Antenna Service Team