What Is Wi-Fi Bonding (or Internet Bonding)?
If we were asked what we consider the most important part of hosting a successful event, we know what we’d answer without hesitation: reliable internet. Now that events are just as often virtual as they are in-person (or a combination of the two), the event’s internet connection is more significant than ever. After all, without strong internet, presentations may suffer, attendees may be disengaged or frustrated, and fun software like event apps, live polling, and VR and AR software may not load. If the event’s internet connection is unreliable, it can affect the event’s entire mood—and not in a good way.
We often advise our clients on how to ensure that their event, conference, or festival has enough Wi-Fi connectivity to suffice. And there are a lot of elements that go into preparing for your specific event’s needs. These include noting your location or venue’s internet availability, counting your expected attendees, and thinking through the types of software that you’ll be utilizing. (Here is our checklist for how to ensure that your event Wi-Fi is truly prepared).
But often, despite your venue’s best intentions, your physical location doesn’t have the internet setup to meet the needs of your event (especially if you happen to be in a rural area, are planning on having a large group of attendees, or are hosting a festival in a remote area).
This is where internet bonding, also referred to as Wi-Fi bonding or channel bonding, comes into play. It’s a way to ensure that you have enough internet connectivity for your event or conference—even if you’re in a location that doesn’t normally offer that option. It may be a simple way to make sure that your event’s Wi-Fi is all set. Here’s exactly what it is.
So, What Exactly Is Internet Bonding?
Internet bonding is the process of taking two different “lines” of internet and combining them to make one, stronger line. We like to think of it like a zipper: you take one type of internet connection (Wi-Fi, for example) and combine it with another (ethernet or cable, for example). When the two are “zipped up” together, they provide a more reliable connection, with the added benefit of greater connectivity and bandwidth.
One of the particularly nice parts about internet bonding is that you can combine any type of internet together. It doesn’t have to be two of the same type of internet. Rather, Wi-Fi bonding can take place with almost any type of internet connection. This includes Wi-Fi, DSL, ethernet, cable, and more. In short, if you know you’re running solely on Wi-Fi, you can combine two Wi-Fi “pipes” together to make one stronger connection for your event.
The process of bonding your internet is done in a couple of different ways, using both hardware and software, and you’ll need a professional to handle it for you. There are routers that are specific to Wi-Fi bonding that can help bond your internet sources. There are also pieces of software on the market that can do this too.
The Benefits of Wi-Fi Bonding
There are a few distinct benefits that internet bonding offers. It’s a great option for events, specifically, since it can provide a boost in reliability and speed, no matter the event location or size.
- 1. Wi-Fi bonding increases speed.
If you’re an event planner, you know that this is of the utmost importance. Speed isn’t “everything” when it comes to internet connection, but it’s close. It’s speed that users expect, since it affects everything: download times, how quickly video plays, the ability to easily utilize heavy event software, and more. If the internet is lagging, it can be frustrating at best and downright disengaging at worst. Internet bonding can increase your speed by about 50%, which is significant.
Fast internet means that your presentations can go off without a hitch and your attendees (whether virtual or in-person) can utilize the event’s software (which may include breakout sessions, social spaces, gamification of your content, and more). They can easily download content, view videos, and multitask without experiencing any hiccups. This just makes for a more successful event all around.
- 2. Wi-Fi bonding increases bandwidth.
In addition to improved speed, internet bonding offers the benefit of increased bandwidth. This means that the internet connection you have available can withstand a large number of devices being tapped into the event’s Wi-Fi connection. If, for example, you’re planning a festival, and you know that there will be hundreds of devices tapping into the event Wi-Fi at any given moment, you’re going to want great bandwidth. This ensures that those multiple devices can download and stream content without a major lag.
- 3. Wi-Fi bonding provides failover.
What is failover? Essentially, it’s a failsafe for your internet connection. Take, for example, this scenario. Let’s say you’re using a bonded internet connection that includes one ethernet connection and one Wi-Fi connection. If something happened—a natural disaster, a car accident that knocks down the local internet, a summer storm rolls through and creates an issue for connectivity—your bonded internet connection would ensure that if one of your internet “pipes” goes down, you have a backup. This is key. Yes, it might cause your speed and bandwidth to momentarily take a hit, but the ability to stay connected despite unforeseen circumstances is important.
- 4. You can bond 5G internet for a crazy fast experience.
We talked a lot about the benefits of using 5G—and 5G-ready devices—during events here. And there are lots of them, including the ability to smoothly handle streaming and heavy software. 5G W-Fi can also be bonded with other internet sources in order to provide those same benefits. And if your event is using a 5G hotspot to provide the best internet experience, you can bond those as well.
All of this is important to consider, especially if you’re planning a conference, event, tradeshow. Wi-Fi bonding can offer a better overall experience for you and your attendees, since it improves connectivity and provides you with some peace of mind. If you have other questions about internet bonding, our experts are happy to help—just reach out to us.
About eTech Rentals
eTech Rentals a national technology solutions provider located in Southern California specializing in rental technology integration. eTech is committed to long-standing client relationships and consistent, reliable local service, trusted by expert event planners, film and entertainment production companies, and businesses in California and nationwide.
Learn more about eTech Rentals at: https://www.etechrentals.com/