7 On Your Side: A solution for fixing poor Internet connections

BELMONT, Calif. (KGO) -- Is the broadband and Wifi signal in your home as strong as you would like? Chances are it isn't. 7 On Your Side takes a look at one possible solution to your problem.

A Bay Area-based company known as Assia says it thinks it has the answer to poor broadband and Internet connections. It gave us a sneak peek before its big launch next month.

Alan Franzen's broadband signal was so weak in his Belmont home he couldn't stream movies from the cloud. He said he was told, "It could be just too slow. They said that you don't have the speed and so I wouldn't be able to download it."

Larry Barasch, CEO of Intuitive Environments, couldn't get a Wifi signal in certain parts of his home in Menlo Park. He said, "Previously, I could use my devices only to about the front door, couldn't necessarily stand on my porch."

Barasch's company creates app-based smarthomes designed to meet energy, security and home entertainment needs. So for him, good Wifi was critical.

John Cioffi, CEO of Assia, hopes the solution is in the palm of his hand. With a device he can measure the speed of the Wifi access network. He showed 7 On Your Side, "The faster beeping means the speed is faster. Slower speed means it's not so good here by the door."

The app Cioffi used is known as Cloudcheck and was developed by his company Assia, based in Redwood City. He said, "Cloudcheck actually measures the speed from the device, my iPhone here to the Wifi router, as well as the speed from the Wifi router back to the Internet, which is called the broadband speed."

If there's a problem with your Wifi, Assia will suggest you buy its Smartifi Automatic Optimization service. Software will be downloaded into your router to automatically improve your Wifi service from the cloud. Barasch had a chance to use it and says it worked to improve his Wifi signal strength.

"I could go out to the end of my driveway and login, so we definitely saw the range increase," Barash said.

Assia also sells a piece of hardware called DSL Boost. It's designed to reduce problems with broadband. Franzen got to try it for free as a beta tester. For the first time, he can stream movies from the cloud.

"Sometimes the speeds would go up, sometimes they would go down and finally at the end when they had everything all fined tuned, the speed went up and stayed up," Franzen said.

The Cloudcheck app is free and is currently available at the Apple store and Google Play. The Smartifi service which is used to improve Wifi performance costs a $1.99 a month. DSL Boost for your broadband is $99 for the hardware, plus $1.99 monthly fee.

Both DSL Boost and Smartifi are scheduled for release in October.
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