EXTENDING THE RANGE
OF THE AIRPORT EXPRESS
Tips for getting the most out of a weak
Wi-Fi signal. By Rob Flickenger
The first great curse of wireless networks is that
they are not yet available on every square inch of
the planet. The second great curse is that they
are not always free to use. When traveling, it can
be more than a little disappointing to use free
wireless access in the city all day, only to return
to your hotel room and be expected to pay $10
for in-room internet access.
There could be dozens of free networks lurking
just outside your hotel room, barely out of range
of your wireless laptop. If you only had a repeater
and a good antenna, you could greatly extend
your range and easily connect to a free network, instead of paying the captive audience fee
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charged by some hotels. But who wants to pack
all of that extra gear on a business trip?
Apple makes a wonderful little gadget called
the AirPort Express. This box is just a little larger
than a laptop power adapter and can act as a
wireless client or repeater. With these simple tips,
you can get much better range from the AirPort
Express than you might expect.
1. Book a hotel room
on a high floor facing
the city. Your chances
of finding an open network are much better
You can boost your
AirPort Express signal
significantly with an aluminum foil reflector.