I know, I’ve been absconding lately, but I’ve been busy with other and more urgent things.

I was sick for a couple of days, I’ve found a new job and I’ve been busy with the forms and the contract to be signed. Also, I’ve been through one of those period when you really don’t have nothing interesting to say, so it’s better to shut up.

I bought one of those bluetooth wireless speakers on Amazon, I’ve always wanted one of those, even though I know it’s not essential in my life. Well, this piece of technology made me crazy and made me discover a number of things about wireless network. I’ve found out that the reason why I couldn’t load webpages while playing music from this speaker paired with my laptop built-in bluetooth is that my otherwise glorified laptop has a an Atheros SoC combo bluetooth + WiFi sharing the same antenna.

I found out that both bluetooth and WiFi broadcast using the same frequencies (2.4 GHz), whereas WiFi has 13 channels (at least, here in Italy we have 13 channels in the 2.4 GHz band) while bluetooth has 79 channels 1 MHz wide. Since in my laptop they share the same antenna, when bluetooth is transmitting, WiFi is not and vice versa. This is called bluetooth coexistence. Tweaking around the wireless card driver and the WiFi channel I managed to sweeten the situation but I’m not satisfied yet. I can open webpages but it takes time like I’ve a 56 kbit connection.

Then I came with a solution: if both bluetooth and WiFi work with the same band, why not to force them to use different bands? So, I bought a cheap ac modem router able to transmit WiFi at 5 GHZ. The two types of connection would use two different bands and the interference would be gone. Wrong! I forgot one important part of this story. To have 5 GHz WiFi you need that the broadcaster and the receiver supports the ac standard. Guess what? My laptop wireless card doesn’t support ac standard, it stops at n, so my mobile, so my tablet, so the WiFi dongle of my desktop, so the Chromecast. Fuck.


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