COVID-19, Working from Home and Google Mesh WiFi
Published April 5, 2020
What a new world we’re living in right now. There’s a whole new normal and this old gal is learning to go with the flow. It’s not easy, but the tree with the limber branches gets to keep them during the storm. I’m limbering up.
COVID-19 made me come to quite a few realizations. First of all, I’m thankful. The situation is not ideal, but I’m thankful that we’ve been able to stay well and maintain employment. My husband is able to work from home and my daughter, although her hours are reduced, she still has a job. My heart goes out to those who are not well and have lost their jobs.
Another realization I came to was...I’m in the at-risk group. When this whole thing started, I stopped to think of the elderly folks that I should check on and realized...DANG! I am the elderly. Oh snap! When did that happen? I don’t feel elderly, but numbers don’t lie. Oh well.
Technology and the New Normal
With the stay-at-home edict, more and more of us are taxing the limits of our wireless routers. I say this because we were without internet connectivity for approximately 18 hours. To some that’s nothing, but for us, it’s a real hardship.
My husband is working from home and requires a stable internet connection. Not to mention that our house operates through our modem/wireless router. When the wireless goes down, so do our computers, TVs and cell phones (yes, we live in a cell phone signal black hole).
When I finally got a knowledgeable cable company technician on the phone, the long and short of the conversation was...you need a more powerful wireless router. The free router provided by the cable company a few years ago can no longer stand up to several Fire TV sticks, cell phones, tablets, desktops and laptops. There are just too many devices taxing it.
I asked for a recommendation and he suggested the Google WiFi Mesh. When I heard the name Google, I thought, “Oh no! Big brother again!” However, I heeded his advice and ordered the 3-part Google WiFi Mesh (Amazon affiliate link). Surprisingly, Amazon delivered it promptly (wish I could say the same for my orders of vitamin C).
Connecting the Google Mesh System
I have a modem/router fiddling phobia. Whenever I have to do more than plug and unplug a router, I’m way out of my league. Fortunately, setting up Google Mesh was easy. All I had to do was plug it into the wall and connect the main wifi point to the modem. Google provides the necessary cables.
After connecting the wifi point I had to download the Google wifi app (or the Google Home app) to configure the device. The configuration process was also rather simple.
Since my Google Mesh system is a three-pack, I had two more wifi points to install and configure. I set the two remaining wifi points at opposite ends of the house. This way the wifi points were evenly distributed allowing for even coverage throughout the house.
Strong and Steady Signal
Prior to installing the Google Mesh system, I used a Netgear signal booster in an attempt to get a reliable signal in my home office. You see, my home office is located in a corner of the house the wifi signal just didn’t like. I don’t live in a large house, but for some reason, the signal had a hard time getting to my little corner. As such, I purchased the Netgear signal booster which helped, but I still had connection problems. It was annoying, but I learned to live with it.
With the Google Mesh, I no longer need the Netgear extender and the signal in my corner of the house is continually strong. No more dropped connections.
COVID-19 Staying Home
Now that we’re forced to stay home (and I have a reliable internet connection), I get to do real constructive things like getting warm and friendly with PlayStation 4. Yep, that’s right. Last year, as a household Christmas gift, I purchased a PlayStation 4 gaming system. It’s something grandparents, parents and grandchildren can all enjoy. I’ve found games for each age group and other games we can all play together. That’s no easy task when the ages range from 2 years old to 60 plus.
I also pulled out the old PlayStation 2 console. My bunny hopping 2-year-old granddaughter loves DDR Max (Dance Dance Revolution) and so do I. No, she doesn’t hit the correct arrows when playing, but she’s happy to be a part of the mix.
These are trying times we’re living in. The health and economic impact of the coronavirus will be felt for months and years to come. While I do keep an eye on what’s going on in the world, I’ve also got to focus on my daily blessings. Being able to play games with the family and having a steady internet connection are just two of the many blessings I enjoy.
I hope and pray you all are well and well supplied in vitamin C. Stay home and stay safe.
Felicia (aka Low Tech Grandma) is a wife, mother, grandmother, freelance writer and low tech blogger.
Last Modified: 10 February 2023
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