I have a good time using the UniFi FlexHD wireless access point after purchasing it. It was really refreshing using the Unifi Controller installed on the Synology everywhere to check and play around with my wifi coverage.
I did noticed that some where in my place, there are dead spots where my wifi changes to mobile data instead. So I am curious if the UniFi FlexHD giving me what I wanted from the purchase.
So I, for the first time in my life, decided to try out checking UniFi – Throughput Heat Maps with the UniFi iOS App.
The article I based my work is this really good one in UniFi web site.
Setting up Floor Plan in the UniFi Controller
You need to first log on to the UniFi Controller using the web browser. You cannot start off in the iPhone app.
When you are there, choose Map > Floor Plan from the menu on the left side.
You can then upload your floor plan. For us in Singapore, it is pretty easy. HDB gives you one or sell you one. Your condo developer gives you one. Your landed property architect gives you one 🙂
I uploaded mine:
After you uploaded it, if it appears very big, don’t worry, just use the sizing tool (+ or -) to reduce it for you to see the whole floor plan. You need to do so as you would want to add the wifi access points to the floor plan.
Just click on the list of access points you have and then drag it to the floor plan.
And drop the WAP to the floor plan.
Okay. You are done for now.
Let’s go to the Unifi app in the iPhone (Sorry, no android for this).
Throughput Heat Maps in the UniFi iOS App
Go to More > Maps and tap on the image of the map to select it. It should be in your app now.
The “More” is right at the end of the page.
Then select MAPS.
Then you can see the floor plan you uploaded
Then next click on OVERLAYS link on the bottom RIGHT corner.
Next choose what you want to test. Downloads or Uploads. I tested for “Downloads”.
Mapping the wifi coverage on the iPhone
Now move to a location where you want to measure throughput speed. This location must be somewhere on the selected floor plan. Tap on Start. This starts a throughput speed test. After several seconds (once the speed stabilizes), tap on a position in the map that reflects your current location. This will log the measured speed at that location.
This is how it looks after I do the download spots.
And moving to the living room and balcony area where I am experiencing dropouts of coverage. Indeed the map started to show that as the download speeds dropped a lot (even down to zero at the balcony).
Finally when you are done, save the map:
This is my final heat map. Repeating the test using an iPad also produces the same results.
Analysing Wifi Coverage using UniFi iOS App
The way to read the heat map is that it RED for the fastest speeds, YELLOW for those a bit slower, and so on all the way to GREEN and BLUE.
Looking at the heat map, it was clear that I have a coverage issue in the living room and the balcony (the area to the left). It is interesting to me that the area to the right (the bed rooms) are actually quite good. The wifi access point is in the middle of the house yet the left side has poor coverage while the right side has better coverage.
I wonder why. Perhaps the circled area can tell us why. First it is a solid wall (the foundation wall). And right at the wall are the built in fridge and microwave ovens. I am wondering if these create a huge interference. Like a Great Wall of China 🙂
I can play around with the settings but I think the easiest solution (for a lazy man like me) is just to get another access point and place it at the living room. Making sure they are on a different channel for 2.4GHz and 5GHz from each other again.
And then run the test again 🙂