Hello CHOICE community!
My team have been collaborating with the New Things Team at CHOICE over the last few weeks, looking at creating new products that help people with problems in their connected home. We’ve had some great conversations with people here. Thanks so much for your generosity.
Something we’ve discovered is people are having problems with connectivity: with Wi-Fi in the home and with the Internet connection in general. (I’ve been looking closely at the criticism of the NBN in threads here and in other CHOICE articles).
Something we’re exploring with the New Things team is a new kind of router.
It would have features on it that help you understand your home network better: why things aren’t working as expected and what you can do about them. These features would be accessible on a screen on the router, going beyond what can be done with simple indicator lights.
Last week, we looked at the problem of not knowing why a device isn’t connecting to the Internet, particularly what part of the network is causing the problem and how to get help. This week, we’ve built upon it with features that help people track Internet connection speed and performance.
We’ve focused on giving people constant, live reporting of how fast and reliable Internet connection speeds are. On top of that, we’ve thought about some interesting things we could do if Internet speed was constantly monitored:
- Looking at how fast your Internet connection is over the long term
- Automatic complaint filing with your ISP or the TIO
- Sharing your performance info with CHOICE to help their coverage of Internet connection problems
- Comparing your speed locally, regionally and nationally.
We’d like to gather support for something like this to actually exist. Some of you have mentioned the inadequacy of ISP-supplied routers, and we want to take this opportunity to explore alternatives.
Take a look at the prototype, and let me know if you’d find something like this useful. I’d particularly like to know your thoughts on the design, and if the kind of information about your home network and your broadband connection you find in it would be useful.