Latest news from the digital world says iPads are wreaking havoc on hotel Wi-Fi systems causing digital traffic jams – which means slow Internet. While connected devices continue to delight owners, the massive amount of downloading, streaming and other Internet usage is chomping away at precious bandwidth – a not-free perk. In some cases this is also happening at colleges. Essentially, the bandwidth hogs slow things down for everyone. And while we’re here, we’d like to note that bandwidth can have numerous definitions but in the case of Wi-Fi usage, it’s like a pipe, relaying information back and forth as you upload and download to your heart’s content – which isn’t the same as your heart’s “contents.” Each pipe of bandwidth is of a finite size, capable of a specific volume, which leaves places such as hotels and colleges scrambling to get bigger pipes to accommodate the exponentially growing need for more bandwidth. This is why we’ll all soon be paying extra hotel fees to have dependable, fast Wi-Fi.
The more connected we all are the more we clog up those information carrying pipes. From QR codes to Smartphones to credit cards, it all adds up. In some cases, colleges experience problems with everything from card swipes at doors to other academic computing needs, all due to excessive bandwidth being dedicated to students watching YouTube or streaming movies to their rooms. Simply checking e-mails or reading Word documents don’t use as much as streaming movies. As an example, you could download 5 million e-mails, 392,000 Excel spreadsheets, 20,000 photographs, around 2,000 MP3 songs, or two movies for 10GB of bandwidth. If you’re using your iPad, Smartphone and laptop at the same time, well, do the math. Should you cut down, or should you keep on chasing fast connection? Only you can decide.