How often has it happened to you that you join a Wi-Fi to save your data, but instead get stuck with a slow network? Well that’s a genuine problem, we have all faced. However, for people running their smartphones on Android 8.1 Oreo, that really shouldn’t be a problem going forward. In a post on Twitter, Google has confirmed that the latest version of its operating system will now gauge the speed of Wi-Fi networks before you connect to them.
Public Wi-Fi can be spotty. For the first time, #AndroidOreo 8.1 lets you take out the guesswork & see the speed of networks before you hit connect. Rolling out now: https://t.co/lSzvCFgNk7 pic.twitter.com/60EmoPxUX4
— Android (@Android) January 22, 2018
Now, it doesn’t exactly reveal the exact bandwidth reading, but it categorizes the speed into Slow, Ok, Fast, Very Fast. Google writes in its blog that if a signal speed is Slow you can just about make Wi-Fi calls. If the speed shows Ok, you are good to read webpages, use social media, and stream music. The Fast and Very Fast network speeds are mostly ideal, with the two allowing you to even stream normal and high-quality videos.
The ratings are a bit conservative, and might not help much if you’re hoping to stream 4K or download a multi-gigabyte app. However, it should help you make more informed decisions. You might skip that overloaded airport connection instead of wasting minutes trying to visit a basic page.
In case, you don’t want to see network speed, you can also opt out of it. Just head to your device’s Settings app, go to Network & Internet, and then Wi-Fi. Look up Wi-Fi Preferences, and then go to Advanced settings. There you would see an option which says ‘Network rating provider’, just choose that to be None.
While the network speed is something new coming to Android smartphones, the operating system has always shown network strength in the form of a pie slice. Fuller the icon meant a stronger signal.