Questions about PODS

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I've Been Here Awhile
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Re: Questions about PODS

I just spoke with a rep from Rogers with a question about extending my Wifi signal into my backyard.  We do get an OK signal there at right now, but it is not as strong as inside and seems to be a bit inconsistent (we currently have no pods as they weren't needed during installation).  We also have a detached garage (about 20 feet away from the backdoor of the house) that my husband would love to have wifi in.

 

They are sending me a set of three pods.  He suggested that I put one on the inside wall closest to the yard and one about halfway between that one and the modem.  My modem is on the main level, which is not that big, so I'm not sure I'll need that.  Do you think we could put one in the garage?  I'm assuming the pods are not made for outdoor use, so that might serve the purpose of getting better connectivity in the garage and yard.  It's a 70s house, so I don't have a ton of electrical sockets to choose from, which makes pod placement options limited.  Are the pods easily moved so that I could plug one in outside on a nice day if I want to work out there and just plug/unplug as needed?

 

If this doesn't work, I can just get an outdoor extender, but it seemed worthwhile to try this free option first!

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Re: Questions about PODS


@Sn02py wrote:

I just spoke with a rep from Rogers with a question about extending my Wifi signal into my backyard.  We do get an OK signal there at right now, but it is not as strong as inside and seems to be a bit inconsistent (we currently have no pods as they weren't needed during installation).  We also have a detached garage (about 20 feet away from the backdoor of the house) that my husband would love to have wifi in.

 

They are sending me a set of three pods.  He suggested that I put one on the inside wall closest to the yard and one about halfway between that one and the modem.  My modem is on the main level, which is not that big, so I'm not sure I'll need that.  Do you think we could put one in the garage?


The number of Pods that you will require inside your home and their location really depends on the building materials that were used to construct it.

 

I don't think that placing a Pod in your garage will be of much benefit unless you want to extend WiFi coverage beyond that point.  Devices in the garage will likely have the same connection quality to the neighbouring Pod in your home as the "garage Pod" itself would.  However, you really have to try all available options and see what actually works the best for you.  The one thing that you absolutely want to avoid is any situation where you have several devices with poor, slow WiFi connections that send/receive lots of network traffic.  That will slow your entire WiFi network down.

 

I'm assuming the pods are not made for outdoor use, so that might serve the purpose of getting better connectivity in the garage and yard.  It's a 70s house, so I don't have a ton of electrical sockets to choose from, which makes pod placement options limited.  Are the pods easily moved so that I could plug one in outside on a nice day if I want to work out there and just plug/unplug as needed?


The Pods are definitely NOT rated for outdoor use.  You should plug the Pod into an indoor wall outlet that is as close as possible to the outdoor area requiring WiFi coverage.  If you don't initially get a good WiFi signal, try a different outlet that changes the Pod's antenna orientation.



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I Plan to Stick Around
Posts: 10

Re: Questions about PODS

I have ignite in my home. I find it odd that, for one example, the tv box in the basement, which is 15' from the modem is constantly connecting to the pod in our master bedroom on the 2nd floor above ground.
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Re: Questions about PODS


@MikeInOttawa wrote:
I have ignite in my home. I find it odd that, for one example, the tv box in the basement, which is 15' from the modem is constantly connecting to the pod in our master bedroom on the 2nd floor above ground.

I can't say for sure why this is happening but according to the WiFi Pods FAQ, this is normal; a WiFi client may not always connect to the closest Pod.  As for why it doesn't connect to the modem, I would guess that something is blocking the signal, making the 2nd floor Pod the better choice.  (Modern homes may not have plaster on mesh walls, but the signal can be blocked by plumbing, duct work, mirrors, and there is often a mesh underlayment under ceramic tile floors.)  You would have to use WiFi analyzer software (on a mobile device or laptop) to troubleshoot this further.



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Re: Questions about PODS

That's interesting. I might look for some analyzing software. There are no obstructions between the tv box and the modem (both in basement). They have direct line of sight.
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Re: Questions about PODS


@MikeInOttawa wrote:
That's interesting. I might look for some analyzing software. There are no obstructions between the tv box and the modem (both in basement). They have direct line of sight.

Unfortunately, I don't have Pods in my setup so I don't know their quirks as well as others here might.  I wish that I could help more with this.

 

For a WiFi scanner, if you use iOS and just want to perform simple scans, install Apple's AirPort Utility.  The primary purpose of this tool is to configure Apple's WiFi base stations but it also has a scanner that can be enabled in settings.  Not the most powerful tool out there but it is is free and trustworthy.  If you are a Mac user, the macOS Wireless Diagnostics also has a built-in WiFi scanner.

 

On Windows, @Datalink  is a fan of WinFi Lite.



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Re: Questions about PODS

I am not completely sure its a signal type thing.. 

My understanding from a least a while back, was told that the TV boxes will tend to tie themselves to a specific AP (vs just to the SSID as a whole).  When scanning for the wifi, the tv box will show all the different pods individually, even though they are all on the same SSID.

Might just be worth re-connecting the wifi on that TV box?



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Re: Questions about PODS

Hi All,

 

So we recently got Ignite TV and Internet. We have a gigabit internet plan and we were also given 3 WiFi pods. 

 

First I set up the modem without the pods to test the speeds before and after adding the pods. When I set up the modem the first time I set it up using our previous network setup. That setup consisted of the modem with 5GHz WiFi enabled and 2.4GHz disabled along with a second router acting as an Access Point also with only the 5GHz network enabled.

 

For the most part this worked pretty well. Speeds ranged from approximately 250Mbps-500Mbps throughout the house. The problem with this setup is that having the XB6 modem and an Access Point setup wasn't seamless. So sometimes we had dropouts or devices would be connected to the Access Point even though it was further away then the XB6. And yes I am aware that the 2.4GHz band has better range but personally I can't stand the slow speeds it offers.

 

So when Rogers saw the dropouts and offered the WiFi pods to us I first thought it would be a perfect solution. Currently it seems like I was wrong. I'll start by saying that we've only had the pods setup for about a day and a half and I do know that they say it can take 2-3 days to optimize them (Although it doesn't say what its optimizing?). So at the moment when connected to the pods devices only seem to get 25-50Mbps. No where near the speed I expected. I read somewhere that the max speed for the pods is supposed to be around 200Mbps though which I would be totally fine with if it meant I had a more seamless experience then my previous setup. I also realize the more pods you have to jump through to get back to the XB6 the slower the speed will be. But even when connected to the pod closest to the Xb6 (about 10 feet away) I still only get around 50Mbps.

 

When setting up the pods I know it said it needed to adjust a few settings on the gateway to auto manage them. I noticed this re-enabled the 2.4GHz network with the same name as the 5GHz network. I am assuming this was to automatically activate band steering for the pods. So this brings me to where I am a bit confused. If band steering is working properly then my devices should be connecting to the best possible network that they support. But for example if I look on the ignitewifi app to see which pod my iPad Pro is currently connected to and then go hold the iPad right next to that pod and do a speedtest it still only gets 25-50Mbps. I am assuming that my devices are only connecting to the 2.4GHz network through the pods. My understanding though is that with the band steering enabled then any 5GHz capabable devices like the iPad Pro or my iPhone X should be connecting to the 5GHz network through the pods. I then logged into the modem admin page and disabled the 2.4GHz network to see if that would force the pods to use 5GHz and therefor improve my speeds but it seems to have had no effect on the speeds I get through the pods.

 

So ultimately I'm hoping someone can tell me why the speeds through the pods are significantly slower than the supposed maximum they offer? I really love the seamless experience that the mesh network offers but with it currently being 10x slower than my previous setup I'm not sure its worth it.

 

I believe I've provided all the necessary details for helping solve this but if you need any other details let me know.

 

Thanks in advance!

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Re: Questions about PODS

You just made me look. There is no way to see what band devices on the Pods are connected to. In the Modem they all show as "ethernet" connected, which of course if wrong.

The phone app or Web App do not show it either.

I find my set up with the PODs to be as fast as I had before.

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Re: Questions about PODS

@geoff890  A more complex mesh can take time to fully optimize but with only 3 pods, it should get to a near-optimal state fairly quickly.

 

Band steering needs to be enabled on the XB6 and both the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands need to be enabled.  The 2.4 and 5 GHz networks need to have the same name.  Given you have tried to "force 5 GHz" with configuration settings, you should double-check that all Wi-Fi settings have been configured correctly and saved, and then power-cycle your XB6 gateway and all of your pods to ensure that they are in a good state.

 

You also need to be very mindful of your pod placement; they can't be too close together but every pod need to have a good connection to its nearest neighbour in the mesh and be close enough to the devices that will be connecting to it.  Ideally, you would want the WiFi RSSI between the pod and its neighbour to be in the -68 to -70 dBm range.  (Since you have iOS devices, you can install and enable the Wi-Fi Scanner in Apple's AirPort Utility and use that to measure and troubleshoot issues related to signal strength.)  When placing pods, be mindful of anything that could be blocking the signal (that includes plaster-on-mesh walls, ceramic tile floors that could have a mesh underlay, duct work behind walls, aquariums, or even people) and ensure that you are still able to establish a good mesh, and that your devices will also be able to get a good connection to the nearest pod. Pods should ideally be placed in the open and not hidden behind furniture.  For additional pod placement tips, you may find this article in Ars Technica helpful.

 

When you are done, walk around your house with your iPhone in hand.  You should see your WiFi signal strength dropping-off, then jump when it hands-off to a closer pod.  Also double-check (with your Wi-Fi scanner) that you do not have any "dead zones" where you require good Wi-Fi connectivity.

 

If you are getting a slow speed test on a mobile device, try disconnecting from Wi-Fi and reconnecting again to ensure that you are actually connected to the closest pod.  (If your pods are too close together, you may find that a Wi-Fi  client remains connected to a more distant pod and at a lower speed.)

 

If you still cannot improve your Wi-Fi speeds, contact Rogers tech support.  They have additional tools that can check the health of your Wi-Fi network and connections to/from/between pods.