Wifi Set up

Whether you spend the majority of your day at home, or at an office, odds are that there is a Wifi network that is available for you to connect your device to, the only thing that holds some people back is how? Setting up a Wifi network is quite simple, and can be done in about 2 minutes from your device.

  1. Open up the settings on the device
  2. Go to Wireless & Networks
  3. If Wi-Fi is unchecked, tap the empty box.
  4. After scanning is complete, click on name of the network
  5. If there is a lock next to the signal you will need to enter a password
  6. Click Connect
  7. Your 3G indicator should change and become a wireless connection

Setup is pretty simple, and the best part is that you are able to save many different connections, so if you are bouncing from place to place, one they are set up it will auto connect upon entering again. Keep in mind with the changing of all these data plans that your use of data while on Wifi won't count against you, so be sure to get all of the networks set up on your device before you forget!

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There are 24 comments

Realist says:

"Notify me when an open network is available"

how much will this drain your battery? is it constantly searching for a connection?

smthomas66 says:

I would have to say that feature will drain your battery if you left it on all day while away from a wifi network. If you have wifi at home and drive to work where you have a network and go to lunch at places that has it and then back home then it's a decent feature but if your away from home for 10 hours without wifi I would advise using the wifi on/off widget until you get back home otherwise you'll probably burn a few extra percent of the battery.

chmcclellan says:

If you are a rooted user, you can change the scan interval in your build.prop file, here is the entry I use on my Droid:

# Time between scans in seconds. Keep it high to minimize battery drain.
#7 minutes=420. 5 minutes=300, 4 minutes=240
wifi.supplicant_scan_interval = 420

Edit: Then again, if you are just learning how to connect to wifi, you may want to exercise caution when editing your build.prop

There are apps that will shut down your wifi once you leave a designated 'home' network -- that will conserve battery life.

Additionally, you can turn off the setting manually when you leave a wifi area -- Android OS even gives you a widget for that:
long press on screen -> widgets -> Power Control.

Nirvana328 says:

EXACTLY

I was just about to recommend Y5 battery saver and Wifi Browser Login.

Y5 will automatically turn your wifi on and off based on if you are near a wireless router that you have connected to previously. Therefore you don't need to leave the wifi radio on, or have it notify you of an open wifi network. And it works using location data based on cell towers, not GPS or anything that will drain your battery.

Browser login works similarly and will pop up a browser for you to login to wireless networks that require you to accept terms of use before connecting to. Both are great apps.

https://market.android.com/details?id=pl.polidea.y5&feature=search_result

https://market.android.com/details?id=org.wifibrowserlogin&feature=searc...

mjneid says:

DDWRT for the win.

Love that firm ware. Anywho, nice write up.

smccloud says:

Works great unless the WiFi where you work is Borked....

shmutt1980 says:

sure you want to trust ANY open wifi connection?

gordol says:

Not sure if this is what you meant or not, but it won't randomly connect to just any hot spot. You have to manually tell it to connect the first time. After that, it will connect to that hotspot the next time you're in range.

joebob2000 says:

This is really really important (especially in light of certain issues Google is facing regarding session security.) *DO NOT* let me repeat *DO NOT* connect to a default device SSID, without a WEP (or stronger) password saved in with the profile. If you connect to, say, "Linksys" with no password, and you trust it the first time, then when you are driving down the street your phone is going to try to connect to every other "Linksys" it sees that also lack a password.

This, in case you hadnt figured it out, is a *bad* thing. You will be flinging your session data, account logins, etc. all over the place. You want to avoid that. Please please please, make it a habit of only connecting to secured hotspots, and if you have a hotspot at home that isn't secured do whatever it takes to change that.

ScottJ says:

I'm not sure this is correct. I believe 'Linksys' is just a label and a more unique identifier is actually stored along with it. I'll have to do some googling to confirm.

mjneid says:

They are correct. It only remembers the SSID, and the password. So if you connect to one " Open/Linksys" router it will connect to all LANs that use the SSID of "Open/Linksys". Just like if you buy a new Router and set the SSID and the encryption to the same that was on your old router everything will still connect w/o problems.

I just went through this setting up an old Motorola WR850G w/ DD-WRT for a guy to use the router as a receiver so he could hook his media center up over the wifi network w/o running x amount of cables all though the house. We hooked up an xBox, a BluRay player, a computer and something else using the router a receiver.

anyway it's completely legit and 100% possible. That is why it's important to use a stand alone SSID and a encryption pattern that is unique.

you could go a step further and hide your SSID so people cannot see your LAN and would have to manually input the settings so you can keep your LAN from being hacked.

gordol says:

If you're already on a contract, Verizon's upcoming price changes do not effect you until your contract expires. Stop the FUD already.

Jo5329 says:

Well that didn't happen to us. We went in yesterday and bought two new phones, and renewed our contract and we are on the same date plan we were before.

I asked to be sure because I too was under the impression new contract, new tier plan. The guy helping us said, "As long as you had a valid contract on July 7th of this year, you are grandfathered when you renew"

----STOP the FUD Already Dude!!!

lorcha says:

Anyone have any good tricks to make Android automatically log into a WiFi network that requires authentication via a webpage? Or possibly how to make your phone stay logged in once you've entered your username/password?

Nirvana328 says:

See my post above about Wifi Browser Login. Not automatic for browser authentication, but still saves a few steps.

https://market.android.com/details?id=org.wifibrowserlogin&feature=searc...

johnmaggio says:

If you guys could offer some help that would be great. I have a Droid X2, and the two primary WIFI spots for me are at home and at work. Both routers are linksys and are WEP secured. My problem is that quite often my connection is very slow or I will get an error in some apps saying that the connection is not working at all (facebook, google reader, foursquare etc...)

Any tips on how to get my wifi to work better with my phone?

mjneid says:

you sir are having bandwidth problems. Run a pingtest.net test or a speedtest test to see what you are transferring data at.

Thunder82 says:

I wish Android had the ability to scan all available networks (3g/4g/wifi) and automatically chose the option that will provide the best performance. Often times my Verizon 4G is faster than my work Wifi (although sometimes it is not) or at a hotel i often stay at - free wifi provided is great when the hotel is empty, or absolute crap when at full capacity.

aapold says:

I find for whatever reason at both my home and work that it claims the wifi there is not in range (tapping on it prompts me whether i wish to forget this connection). If I turn wifi off and back on again it finds it just fine and I can connect.

lonndoggie says:

EDIT--Whoops, posted on the wrong story! Had both open, on different tabs. Sorry!

But in case you're wondering what I was blathering on about:
============================================================
I just took a look at our data usage at Verizon. This most recent billing period, ending May 20th, we each used a little over a 1GB each. HOWEVER, going back in time, the heaviest usage either my wife or I had was .7GB, and more typically .2GB.

We haven't changed our data consumption habits. What's up, Verizon? Rigging the game, are we, in preparation for the new rates?

Anyone else see anything like that?

I wouldn't assume it is a Verizon problem... could be missed setting on a new app. When I got my Xoom (wifi) I couldn't figure out what was tanking my battery life. Turns out 2 apps where constantly updating - I only saw the hit to my battery since the data usage was invisible.

HM34me says:

I have a nook color with cm7 and was working perfect. I was out and tried to use a wifi address that was in range and when I added it to the list I lost the wifi that was working. Now it comes up out of range on all the wifi list. I am a newbe any help would be great. Thanks in advance.

HM34me

digitalreins says:

Great little article, if a bit brief. There is another how to on connecting an android tablet to a wireless network here:

http://www.digitalreins.com/connect-an-android-tablet-to-a-wifi-network/

This is for the people who need a little more..