Fairy Lights Cause Wi-Fi Problems, Ofcom Says

01/12/2015 09:00 GMT | Updated 01/12/2015 11:59 GMT

Christmas decorations such as fairy lights can slow down wi-fi signals, providing concern for those who rely upon multiple screens to get them through the festive period.

Halogen lamps, dimmer switches, stereo and computer speakers are among a list of products Britain's telecoms regulator found could slow down the speed at which internet signals travel through homes.

Ofcom has released a new app to allow homeowners to diagnose potential issues and to find a solution to improve wi-fi speeds.

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Decorations could be slowing down our browsing

It comes after research found as many as six million households suffer slower-than-usual wireless speeds which might be improved after simple changes around the home.

Interference from other electronics, ranging from innocuous decorations to permanent fixtures, can be alleviated easily by moving routers to an optimum position.

The regulator's Wi-Fi Checker App is available for both Android and iOS (Apple) smartphones and tablets, and provides people with helpful tips to improve their connections.

It comes as Ofcom's latest Connected Nations report found that there had been "good progress" in the availability of telecoms services to consumers across Britain.

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More people are using more data than ever before

More than a quarter of homes (27%, or 7.5 million) now have 'superfast' broadband – with a connection of 30 Mbit/s or more, up from one in five (21%, or around 6 million homes) a year earlier, it found.

For the first time the annual report found users with speeds above 40 Mbit/s are downloading significantly more data, suggesting consumers are getting more out of faster speeds.

The growth in online streaming, catch-up TV and video calls are all believed to have played a part in the increased use of data.

WIFI Revealed