The basis of every smart health home: this is how you ensure the right infrastructure

 

In the past year we have already extensively discussed some parts of a smart health home infrastructure, including the use of WiFi repeaters and routers and modems for your smart health home. In this article we take the complete basis of your smart health home with you because without this basis there is no smart health home.

The basis of every smart health home infrastructure

A good infrastructure is the basis of every smart health home. This infrastructure makes communication between the devices in your smart house possible and ensures that these devices can communicate with the outside world. You can therefore see the infrastructure as your network; the links between all devices and your modem / router.

Make an inventory

The first step you take is to estimate how you want to set up your smart health home. Which devices do you want to connect, where will these devices be located and what is the status of the network that is already there? This way you can estimate how much pressure you are going to put on your network and how you can respond to it by improving your network. In doing so, take a good look at the future in which more and more equipment is becoming smart, more and more people are walking around with smart and mobile devices, and therefore the infrastructure must be optimal.

The router

One of the most important devices in your network is the router. The internet connection arrives on this device, after which it is distributed. The router looks at the devices smart health connected to it and optimizes the signal for each of these devices. In recent years, routers have become increasingly faster, not only in terms of throughput but also in terms of processor power. This processor power makes it possible to provide more and more devices with an optimal internet connection. The router is the access point and must be able to handle all connections, with a stable and fast signal.

Make sure you purchase a good quality router, so with a user-friendly interface, a powerful processor and sufficient connection options. Good brands include LinkSys, Sitecom, TP-Link and Netgear. Do you use a router from KPN, Ziggo or another provider? It is always wise to purchase an A-brand router yourself. These are faster, safer, offer more setting options, and so on. You do not have to reset everything when changing providers.

The ethernet cables

Where for many the next step would be the WiFi connection, it is actually the ethernet cable, or the utp cable. All equipment that must always be smart health connected to the internet and for which you require a stable and fast connection must actually be smart health connected via a cable. The Ethernet cable is still the best way to connect your smart health home equipment (including your computers) to the internet and your health home network. Not only because it is faster but also because it is safer and you avoid the crowds on the WiFi network.

"ethernet

Now it is often quite difficult to connect all devices in the house with an Ethernet cable. In many existing houses there are no ethernet cables through the walls or they do not come out of the wall in every room. Yet it is wise to draw ethernet cables where possible, especially when you are going to build a house. Make sure that every room has a connection point and – better still – make sure that the inventory you first made is as complete as possible so that you can already make the connections at specific points. Think of cameras for example.

A switch

Now you may find that you have too few Ethernet ports on your router. Solutions can also be found for this, for example in the form of a switch. This switch acts as a sort of signal distributor and makes it possible to connect dozens of additional Ethernet cables, depending on the device. There are also POE switches. This stands for Power Over Ethernet. If you have smart health home devices that support this, for example a camera, you can connect this purely via an Ethernet cable. A separate connection to the mains is then not necessary.

Sonoff Touch Logo 150x150 - Presentation of the Sonoff Touch connected switch

Other options

The ethernet cable offers the highest bandwidth and is the best option, but if this is not possible then there are other options before you watch WiFi. Homeplug (also called powerline) is an interesting solution. This works through your mains and therefore makes it possible to get internet signals through your socket to another room. Hang a Homeplug at your router on the wall socket and connect both with an ethernet cable. Then hang a homeplug in the desired room and you can also connect an ethernet cable to this to connect equipment. We are now ready for the second generation Homeplug and it works through phases / groups in the house by making contact with the ground or zero. The grounding is therefore required for the use of Homeplug.

"homeplug

Another possibility is the use of coaxial cables, which may already be there. The advantage of coax over Homeplug is that it allows two-way traffic, a signal out and a signal back at the same time. It is a solution where you have to go directly from the starting point (connection) to the end point (connection). Two well-known brands for coax internet are Echobox and Hirschmann Moka.

WiFi and WiFi repeaters

If you have followed the first steps and thus provided the most important devices with a stable and fast connection via a cable then you can start looking at your WiFi network. Your WiFi network is a must, you need it, but it is important to keep the pressure on this as small as possible. This is for a reason because suppose you turn on three devices that stream music and / or ehealth, then a WiFi network is often at its max. And with the arrival of more and more mobile devices and accessories that can be smart health connected via WiFi, you have to actively manage the wireless network. In addition – not unimportantly – WiFi does not offer two-way traffic such as an Ethernet cable does, and therefore has a slower response time. You can send information but you cannot receive it at the same time.

First of all you look at the coverage in your house. Do you have sufficient range on your mobile devices anywhere in your health home? And can the smart health home accessories tucked away in the corner also have sufficient range (if they do not have a wired connection)? With WiFi repeaters you simply repeat the signal from your router in a room where the signal is somewhat weaker. In this way you ensure sufficient reach throughout your house. Roaming is an important word here; More and more router manufacturers are offering access points and repeaters that allow you to use the same network (SSID) throughout the house and seamlessly switch between these access points. Think of it as a mobile network; you seamlessly switch from one mast to the other with your telephone outdoors and you have excellent range everywhere. This “roaming” is also possible within your house.

 

Then make sure that you set whether your network accepts 2.4GHz, 5GHz or both. If you have devices that do not yet support 5GHz, you must (also) switch on 2.4GHz anyway. The 5GHz connection is generally used less, so you may also experience a better connection with this. It is also true that at 2.4 GHz there are only three overlapping channels; channels 1, 6 and 11. This is much more at 5GHz, namely 23 (depending on your device). This will work better in combination with other networks. With a 5GHz network, there is less chance of interference, because most wireless devices such as Bluetooth devices, cordless telephones, microwaves and computers use the 2.4GHz band. However, 5GHz has the disadvantage that the signal is more difficult to pass through walls; the range is less but the stability and speed are somewhat higher.

The next step is to search for the most suitable (least busy) channels. WiFi routers and access points give you the option to set different channels in the management interface. Channel 1 or 6 is often switched on by default. If there are many routers (networks) in the vicinity, it is advisable to adjust the standard channel yourself, for example to 3, 8, 11 or 13. Because channels have an overlapping effect, it is advisable to have at least 1 channel space between other channels in leave the neighborhood. There are various tools available that allow you to search for the best channels, including Vistumbler (Windows) WiFi Analyzer (Android) and Network Analyzer (iOS).

An average router can handle around 25 devices on the wireless network. These are devices that do not demand too much from the router, for example no continuous ehealth stream. As indicated above, you can see that the router (the network) is having a hard time if you start streaming full with three or more devices. The network then becomes saturated. It is therefore wise to look carefully at which devices are and are not smart health connected wirelessly and you can even use various tools, including Wi-Spy and Channelizer, analyze how your network is faring at a certain moment. With this analysis you can also continue by searching for a solution to increase stability. So keep full control over your wireless network. Know which devices connect to it, what these devices require, how your network performs and where the bottlenecks lie.

 

 smart health home infrastructure Interi Logo Wifi Switch 150x150 - Test of the Konyks Interi Wifi Switch

And then there is another point when it comes to WiFi. There are currently two important protocols for communication from and between smart health home devices; ZigBee and Z-Wave. ZigBee is a standard that works on the 2.4 GHz bandwidth and can be found around channel 1. If you have multiple ZigBee devices in your network, you can see, for example with the above-mentioned tool, that the network is already quite active. This is also a part to be reckoned with, but if you want to know more about these smart health home standards then you can visit our article about smart health home protocols.

Conclusion

With the above tips and steps you can realize a good and stable basis for your smart health home. Make sure you estimate in advance what you will need and then look for the best network, from wired connections via ethernet to a WiFi network for devices that need to communicate wirelessly. In this way your smart health home is also provided with a perfect basis for the future.

You can read more tips and advice in our tips section.

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