Never Miss A Moment Of The Action. Use code GAMES at checkout for $20 off.

The latest Tablo news along with tips to maximize your free TV experience. 

Ten Tips to Ensure Your WiFi Network is Ready for Streaming


Whether you’re just thinking of switching over to Over-the-Air TV or have already been watching live and local broadcast TV, getting the most out of your WiFi network (AKA: the backbone of your entertainment system) is critical. Here are our 10 tips for making sure your streaming media flows swift and smooth throughout your home network.

Tip#1: Ditch the rental router

ISP rental routers are typically several years old and therefore unlikely to offer the latest features or technology.

More importantly, they can also be significantly locked down, which may result in problems or conflicts with technology like VPNs and out-of-home streaming features like Tablo Connect which could put a monkey wrench in your TV set up.

With rental fees averaging $4-8 per month, it’s often more cost-effective to buy your router vs. rent, especially if you’ll be staying with your ISP for several years. Make sure to check with your ISP before choosing a new router as they may not support the one you have your eye on.

HINT: If your ISP requires that you use one of their routers but you still want more control over your home network, you can sometimes bridge the two devices.

Tip#2: Use the latest technology

Router technology has come a long way in the last few years. Newer routers will offer upgraded internal components and stronger external antennas which can increase performance and range.

Make sure yours runs either the 802.11ac (WiFi 5) or the newer 802.11ax (WiFI 6) standard, both of which are designed to handle the speeds streaming requires. Most newer routers are also billed as ‘dual-band’ and can transmit data over both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radio frequencies – more on that later.

If you’re looking for a solid recommendation, our friends at The Wirecutter have a few suggestions. If you already have a newer router, make sure you periodically check for firmware updates.

AX router

Tip#3: Find the best place for your router

While most routers won’t win any awards for being beautiful, you should resist the urge to hide it away. To get the best performance from your router, it should be as high as possible in a central location in your house, away from walls or other obstructions.

If you don’t want to wreck your Pinterest-worthy abode’s style, there are options for camouflaging it, but make sure not to block any of the air vents.

Tip#4: Adjust the antennas

If you think all of your router’s antennas should be pointing up for the best reception, think again. According to those in the know, it’s actually best to have one pointing up and the other pointing horizontally as the WiFi antennas on your devices like your smartphone, your laptop or streaming device can have differing orientations.

Router antenna direction

Tip#5: Choose the right channel

If you live in an urban environment, there are likely multiple WiFi signals all competing for space on the popular 2.4 GHz frequency which can cause interference. You may be able to combat this by choosing a different 2.4 GHz channel than your neighbor or moving some of your devices to the less crowded 5 GHz spectrum, which will require a dual-band router.

Dual Band Router

Tip#6: Avoid interference from other appliances

Another reason to take a close look at your router’s channel and frequency settings is there are appliances interfering with the 2.4 GHz frequency that you might not even think about like microwaves, baby monitors and cordless phones. While you can buy things like cordless phones on other frequencies if you want to avoid buying all new gear just make sure to keep your router away from these types of appliances.

Tip#7: Beef up security, or, you know, actually enable security

If your WiFi password is ‘WiFi’, ‘Password’, or ‘1234’ your neighbor (or someone even more unsavory) might be mooching your internet and reducing your bandwidth to a trickle. Make sure to change the default credentials and the network name from the standard (like Linksys) to something new that doesn’t identify you (like FBI Surveillance Van #342 vs. Tom’s House).

Network Steal

Tip#8: Make sure you have good coverage

If you’ve got a larger house or are trying to stream to devices in your basement, bonus room or garage without success, you may need a WiFi extender. These devices will boost the reach of your existing router to ensure you get the speeds you need in those hard-to-reach spots.

If you need just a smidgen more power, you can try this DIY hack using a beer can.

WiFi Beer Can
Tip#9: Tame your bandwidth hogs

Streaming high definition video, torrenting, doing video chats and online video games can all suck up significant bandwidth on your WiFi network. If you want to make sure multiple family members can stream at the same time, you may wish to reduce the recording quality on your Tablo and your streaming quality on your Netflix account.

Tablo Recording Quality

Advanced users might want to set up Quality-of-Service (or QoS) rules on your router which allows you to give devices bandwidth priority over others.

Tip#10: When you can, wire it

While you can do a lot of things to improve your WiFi network, nothing can really beat the speed and stability of a wired ethernet connection. If you have a device that is still having difficulty via WiFi and it’s logistically difficult to connect it via Ethernet, you may want to look into Powerline Ethernet Adapters or MOCA Adapters.

These devices enable you to extend hardwired Ethernet connections to places in your home where you may not have an Ethernet jack installed or where WiFi reception is poor or unavailable. TechHive has a good overview of both of these technologies here.

Powerline Ethernet

If you have any other tricks or tips for fine-tuning your WiFi network or suggestions on the best WiFi routers for cordcutters, leave us a message on Facebook or Twitter.

Related Blogs

Get the latest from Tablo.

Signup to get the latest product and over-the-air TV  news delivered right to your inbox. 

How to restart your phone/tablet

Sometimes, just restarting your smartphone or tablet can clear up issues with apps. The links below will provide detailed instructions on how to force close your Tablo app. 

Apple iPhone

Android smartphones 

Most Android smartphones and tablets can be restarted by holding the POWER button and then selecting RESTART or POWER OFF and RESTART from the POWER OPTIONS menu.

NOTE: Newer Samsung devices require you to hold the POWER/SIDE button and VOLUME DOWN to make the POWER OPTIONS menu appear. On the Google Pixel 6, hold the POWER and VOLUME UP buttons.

How to force close your Tablo app?

Sometimes, just restarting the app can fix things. The links below will provide detailed instructions on how to force close your Tablo app. 

Apple iPhone/iPad

Android smartphones/tablets 

Need help with the final steps?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.  Follow the steps in the video below for a full walkthrough of the remaining parts of the Tablo setup process.

Tablo Logo White

Please enter a valid address. 

We recommend entering your full address for the most accurate results. 

Sorry, no results. Please check your zip code.

Getting your channels...

You can get channels for free!
( over-the-air channels and streaming channels )

This is an estimate only. Actual broadcast TV channels received may vary based on TV antenna location, reception, topography, and other obstructions. Streaming channels require an internet connection. View the Channel Details Report for specifics of each channel and to help determine what antenna is needed. 

Reception alert:  Based upon the location you entered, you may not get many of the major networks.  As a result, Tablo may not be the best fit for you.  Please enter your full address above for best accuracy. 

Major Local Broadcast Channels

Major networks you know that have live sports, major events, local news and more. 

Entertainment and Lifestyle Channels

Sports Channels

News Channels

Movie Channels

Family and Kid Channels

En Español

Additional TV Broadcast Networks

Internet Streaming TV Channels

Internet-based free streaming channels .

Alien Nation Black logo
All Reality
Buzzfeed Unsolved
court TV logo
Fawsome logo
Gusto Espanol
Anime HiDive logo
iFood logo
laff more! TV logo
Snowboarder Television logo
Surfer logo