What Does WiFi Look Like in an AI World?
AI and WiFi are cut from the same cloth: two technologies designed to speed up operations, improve efficiency, and make lives easier; two technologies that slowly appeared first here and then there on the market, until suddenly they were everywhere.
WiFi has firmly entrenched itself as a mission critical resource. Many devices are WiFi only (phones, tablets, IoT devices), and plenty others are WiFi capable. Most business processes depend on the WiFi network and connected devices in some way. This technology is so integral to operational success that a problem with the WiFi can cost companies hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Then you have AI. Some AI technologies have been around for a few years, while others are brand new. Companies are still testing technologies and deciding how they can help improve operational efficiency. We don’t know exactly what the future holds, but we know that AI is working alongside WiFi to change things. In this blog, we’ll take a look at some impacts and provide ways to support both AI and WiFi in your business.
How does AI impact WiFi?
Right now, there are two significant ways in which AI is impacting WiFi:
- More WiFi-dependent tools are using AI technology
- Solutions that optimize or in some way monitor/manage WiFi networks are using AI technology
Let’s take a look at each of these.
WiFi-dependent tools that use AI technology
Many IoT devices use machine learning – a type of artificial intelligence – to provide greater value for businesses. The more value, the more these devices are adopted. The more they are adopted, the more AI-focused tools fly into the market. The more tools on the market, the more tools for every business to adopt.
It’s a never-ending cycle, and it’s one that is dependent on the WiFi network.
These IoT tools and solutions are (usually) only WiFi-capable. They cannot join the network any other way. If the WiFi isn’t working, these tools aren’t working. If companies can’t depend on the tools to deliver valuable analytics and insights, the tools aren’t worth the investment.
It’s therefore crucial that the WiFi is optimized and reliable so that all AI-based tools can do their job: help companies reduce downtime, improve efficiency, and boost productivity, UX, and safety.
As AI technology continues to expand its presence in our world, the WiFi is going to have to support more and more of these devices. We’re already seeing networks that support hundreds of thousands of devices. How much more will networks be expected to do in the future?
AI-based solutions that optimize WiFi networks
As for WiFi networks themselves, thanks to the increasing responsibilities placed upon them, the WiFi now needs its own AI-based solutions. These solutions support IT teams with more network visibility and proactive WiFi analytics so that problems can be both greatly reduced and resolved faster than ever.
Why is AI support necessary?
Most business processes require reliable WiFi. However, the WiFi is dynamic. It is always changing, affected by everything from microwaves to users opening and closing different apps. WiFi issues occur frequently, and they can be related to utilization, density, software, infrastructure, devices, servers, the wired network, or many other factors. IT has to be able to identify and resolve issues quickly in order to keep the network running optimally. This requires IT to be able to analyze the data from every single connected device in real time. However, there are millions of data packets sent every second and IT cannot analyze packets in those quantities in real time.
This is where AI solutions come into play.
These solutions analyze every aspect of the network ecosystem in real time. They learn to recognize normal and abnormal network behavior for every unique network they optimize. They can alert IT in real time to issues and provide resolutions. They are a necessary investment for anyone who wants to eliminate WiFi issues, improve UX, and protect operations.
What AI solution do you need for WiFi Assurance?
WiFi Assurance is the surety of a WiFi network that does what you need, when you need, no questions asked.
To achieve this type of network, look for an AI-powered solution that delivers:
- 24/7 visibility: This includes visibility into every connected device, all infrastructure, any nearby devices operating on the airwaves, and any external devices or networks that could cause interference. There should be no network mysteries or dark spots.
- Proactive alerts: IT should know of problems as soon as they occur rather than be dependent on users to alert them to issues. Proactive alerts allow IT to resolve problems sooner, often before users are ever impacted. If the AI solution includes root cause identification with alerts, problem resolutions are implemented even faster.
- End user metrics: User experience is one of the most important metrics for any WiFi network. If a network doesn’t support its users, it is useless. To this end, all network metrics and analytics should come from the user level so that IT knows exactly how the network is meeting user needs.
- Automated troubleshooting: IT must be able to resolve network problems from any location at any time. Remote, automated troubleshooting is necessary to keep networks reliable and optimized.
- Historical packet capture: IT cannot be onsite 24/7. AI solutions that provide historical packet capture keep IT informed of all network activity regardless of whether IT was onsite or not. This allows IT to study performance and behavior from any point in time, identify long-term trends, and suggest budget-friendly solutions to future-proof the network based on both historical and real time analytics.
Work with the future of technology, not behind it
Investing in our businesses is one way that we all drive success. As you evaluate the AI technologies on the market, keep your WiFi network top-of-mind. Its capabilities, strengths, and reliability will determine whether or not many other new technologies can deliver on their promises.