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Check your Wi-Fi router to boost broadband speeds with these 5 free simple changes

It’s great to have family and friends over to yours on Christmas Day – even if you do have to do all the cooking – but one thing that can derail the day digitally is when they all connect your home Wi-Fi network and then suddenly the connection grinds to a halt.

You can’t check that roast parsnip recipe, your niece and nephew can’t post to TikTok, and grandma can’t FaceTime your cousins in Australia, and you can forget about downloading that brand new game to your PS5.

It’s a familiar scene over the Christmas holidays, so thankfully the broadband experts over at Virgin Media O2 have shared their festive Wi-Fi tips to keep you and the family connected and happy over the festive season.

Virgin says it is best to download software such as video games or console updates as early as possible.

“Try to download any important software updates for any tech gifts such as games consoles, mobile phones or tablets so that they can be enjoyed once unwrapped with no delays,” the experts said.

You don’t want a grumpy teenager on your hands when the Call of Duty download says it’s going to take five hours just after they’ve unwrapped that new Xbox.

This isn’t too obvious but it’s true: chains of twinkling lights can sometimes cause issues with Wi-Fi signals, so draping them near your computer, TV, or smart speaker could be why you can’t stream something – and definitely don’t put them right next to your router.

If not putting lights near your router was obvious, this one might not be.

“Avoid putting tinsel anywhere near your Hub, it’s made out of foil so could interfere with your WiFi by reflecting the signal,” Virgin tells us.

We suppose if you’re trying to pretend the Wi-Fi is broken to get everyone to talk to each other then this is a good sneaky tactic, but if you prefer silent bliss on the big day then avoid draping that tinsel near your routers.

Virgin said it found 34% of Gen Z-ers have wrapped their router in tinsel having been unaware of this. Perhaps they ended up enjoying the digital detox.

If you’re worried your streaming won’t hold out on Christmas Day, Virgin says you should consider downloading it to your device before the big screening so you don’t come across any streaming issues that dent the festive mood.

“If you’re not with Virgin Media, try to download movies the night before so you don’t have to worry about any delays to the family Christmas film,” the Virgin experts quipped.

Aside from Virgin Media O2’s sound advice, there is one other simple things you can do to ensure your home Wi-Fi behaves during Christmas, including the absolute classic ‘turn it off and on again’.

That’s right, rebooting your Wi-Fi router genuinely does work and tends to fix connectivity and speed issues with many broadband connections across the country.

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