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I have a MacBoook Pro with OS X 10.9.5 connected to my router with a Power Line Connection and Ethernet, which I did because I use the laptop to play an real time online game which needs mostly a stable ping and no ping spikes, and using WiFi at a distance was deteriorating the gaming experience.

The problem is, someone in my house has bought an iPhone 6 (after I installed the PLC, so I'm not quite sure if the problem arises all the same if the MacBook is connected by wifi), and by trial and error I highly suspect that it interacts with the internet connection to other devices. Whenever the phone came home, if I was playing, the connection went nuts. Not that ping went high, but overboard. To the point of not being able to navigate normally either: websites, youtube videos, etc. I mean, charging any light website shouldn't need that much speed, and still it doesn't work.

I would think that it's not possible that an iPhone 6 with a few apps, which sometimes isn't even transmitting any significant data, could take up that much bandwidth (the local connection is supposed to be around 10Mb/s, and I've been able to enjoy 1,5Mb/s download speeds with torrent).

So I don't really know what the cause is, or how to solve it. Is it truly a bandwidth problem? How does the router determine how much bandwidth is allotted to each device/output (wifi/ethernet)? Could I change the router settings (it's a normal low-end router given by my internet provider) to make the computer a priority, so that the iphone only takes reasonable/excess bandwidth?

  • Welcome to the community DarJul. There seems to be a lot of assumptions and unanswered questions in your post. Can you explain how you've determined the iPhone most definitely interacts with the internet connection of other devices? How did you test this? – Monomeeth Sep 13 '16 at 0:56
  • Thanks, and sorry! Okay, I'll admit there's nothing definite about it. I highly suspect it because I've tested by turning other devices' WiFi connection on and off (and may I add that there aren't many devices connected normally, maybe 3 or 4, so the number didn't seem to be the issue), and it only happens with that iPhone 6, not with an iPhone 4, or any other phones or laptops or devices (an iPad, for example). – DarJul Sep 13 '16 at 1:01
  • Can you please provide some additional info on your setup: Your router model, whether you have one Wi-Fi SSID setup or more (eg. one for 2.4GHz and one for 5GHz), and what Power Line adaptors are you using? – Monomeeth Sep 14 '16 at 0:30
  • I think this is it: Vodafone VDSL Router, Model: VH4032N. I think the brand is just the name of the internet provider (I've had other routers provided before that had a specific brand, I can't seem to find this one). It doesn't have 5GHz functionality, and we have no other router, though there are many others in the block, all normally password protected. The PLC adapter is TP-LINK TL-PA4010P KIT. – DarJul Sep 14 '16 at 21:02
  • Thanks for the details. That router is a generic model used in many countries by various Telco/ISP providers. Besides that I'm not very familiar with it. I'll see if I can track down a manual, but that may be hard as I think it's mainly used in non-English speaking countries and I only speak English. But in the meantime I will update my answer with a second test for you to do. – Monomeeth Sep 15 '16 at 1:13
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Troubleshooting is basically a process of elimination, but this one may be a little hard to do through the comments, so here we go.

TEST 1

Let's start by doing this test:

  1. Switch Wi-Fi off in your iPhone settings (not just disconnect).
  2. Totally shut down the iPhone.
  3. Use your Wi-Fi as usual to play your real-time game for about a half hour and make a note of the results.
  4. Switch the iPhone back on but do not switch Wi-Fi back on.
  5. Use your Wi-Fi as usual to play your real-time game for about a half hour and make a note of the results.
  6. Switch Wi-Fi back on in the iPhone and connect it to your Wi-Fi.
  7. Use your Wi-Fi as usual to play your real-time game for about a half hour and make a note of the results.

After following the steps of test 1 you should have three sets of results to share back. This will greatly help you and the community to narrow down your problem, one way or other.

TEST 2

Okay, Power Line adapters are notoriously 'fussy' and it doesn't take much for something to interfere with the quality of their connection. Let's do this test:

  1. Disconnect both ends of the Power Line connection, totally removing them from power etc.
  2. Connect your MacBook Pro directly to the router via ethernet.
  3. Ensure the iPhone is not connected to your Wi-Fi and play your real-time game for about a half hour and make a note of the results.
  4. Now make sure the iPhone is connected to your Wi-Fi network and play your real-time game for about a half hour and make a note of the results.

Let us know the results.

  • I asked for the phone to experiment, and the results were more or less what I expected. With the phone off, and with the WiFi off, everything was fine. But when I turned the phone's WiFi on, the game became unplayable. I didn't spend more than 5 minutes playing because it was unplayable, and after waiting for 10 more minutes it still was, though there were spikes in which ping was just extremely high (2500) and responsiveness felt awful, although there did seem to be a connection, however bad. – DarJul Sep 14 '16 at 0:03
  • Ok, just to confirm, all other factors remained constant during testing (i.e. other connected devices, cordless phones, etc) and you could play your game fine while the phone was switched off and also while the phone was witched on but not connected to Wi-Fi? And then, after connecting the iPhone to Wi-Fi, you ran into problems? – Monomeeth Sep 14 '16 at 0:05
  • They did, as far as I know, I took special care to ask. – DarJul Sep 14 '16 at 20:54
  • Ok, I'll try out the second test when I have time! – DarJul Sep 15 '16 at 9:30

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