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What is a wireless heatmap?

A Wi-Fi heatmap visually represents the wireless signal coverage and strength. Wi-Fi heatmaps are generally overlaid on top of a building or facility floor plan to help give network owners a clear idea of where problem areas are located about the collected survey data and access point locations.

In wireless networking, a heatmap is a visual representation of the signal strength and coverage of a wireless network within a specific area. It’s essentially a color-coded map showing the wireless signal strength at various locations within the area being analyzed. Here’s a breakdown of its features and purposes:

  1. Signal Strength Representation: A heatmap uses colours to represent the strength of the wireless signal. Typically, red or orange indicate strong signal strength, while cooler colours like blue or green indicate weaker signal strength.
  2. Coverage Area Analysis: It helps identify the coverage area of a wireless network. This is useful for understanding where the signal is strong and where it might be weak or non-existent.
  3. Network Planning and Optimisation: Heatmaps are often used in the planning stage of a wireless network to determine the optimal placement of access points. Visualising coverage makes it easier to identify areas that need additional coverage and avoid overlapping signals.
  4. Troubleshooting: In existing networks, heatmaps can be used to troubleshoot issues related to signal strength, such as dead zones or interference problems.
  5. Tools and Software: Creating a heatmap typically involves using specialised software to analyze wireless signal strength across different locations. This software might use data collected from site surveys where signal strength measurements are taken at various points in the area. To start the process, we usually require a building schematic; we then scan that into our software and create the heatmap using different factors and considerations.
  6. Practical Application: They are particularly useful in large spaces like office buildings, campuses, or outdoor areas, where managing wireless coverage can be complex.

In summary, a wireless heatmap is a practical tool for planning, optimising, and troubleshooting wireless networks, ensuring efficient coverage and signal strength across the desired area.

A blue circle with a wi-fi icon on it.

More details here:
Wireless heatmap

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