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When your Netflix stream drops out in the middle of a rainstorm, can you blame the wild weather?

Quite possibly. The weather can affect the performance of your internet connection in a variety of ways.

This can include issues such as physical damage to the network, water getting into electrical connections, and wireless signal interference. Some types of connection are more vulnerable to weather than others.

The behavior of other humans in response to the weather can also have an effect on your connection.

How rain can affect your internet connection

Internet connections are much more complicated than the router and cables in our homes. There are many networking devices and cables and connections (of a variety of types and ages) between our homes and the websites we are browsing.

How do we connect to the Internet?

An internet connection may involve different kinds of physical link, including the copper wiring used in the old phone network and more modern fibre optic connections. There may also be wireless connections involved, such as WiFi, microwave and satellite radio.

Example of multi-layered internet access. Image via Ferran / Wikimedia Commons
Example of multi-layered internet access. Image via Ferran / Wikimedia Commons

Rain can cause physical damage to cables, particularly where telecommunication networks are using old infrastructure.

ADSL-style connections, which use the old phone network, are particularly vulnerable to this type of interference. Although many Australians may be connected to the National Broadband Network (NBN), this can still run (in part) through pre-existing copper wires (in the case of “fiber to the node” or “fiber to the cabinet” connections) rather than modern optical fibers (“fiber to the home”).

Different types of NBN connection. Image via Riick via Wikimedia Commons
Different types of NBN connection. Image via Riick via Wikimedia Commons

Much of the internet’s cabling is underground, so if there is flooding, moisture can get into the cables or their connectors. This can significantly interfere with signals or even block them entirely, by reducing the bandwidth or causing an electrical short-circuit.

But it isn’t just your home connection that can be impacted. Wireless signals outside the home or building can be affected by rainfall as water droplets can partially absorb the signal, which may result in a lower level of coverage.

Even once the rain stops, the effects can still be felt. High humidity can continue to affect the strength of wireless signals and may cause slower connection speeds.

Copper cables and changed behavior

If you are using ADSL or NBN for your internet connection, it is likely copper phone cables are used for at least some of the journey. These cables were designed to carry voice signals rather than data, and on average they are now more than 35 years old.

Only around 18% of Australian homes have the faster and more reliable optical-fiber connections.

There is also a behavior factor. When it rains, more people might decide to stay indoors or work from home. This inevitably leads to an increase in the network usage. When a large number of people increase their internet usage, the limited bandwidth available is rapidly consumed, resulting in apparent slowdowns.

This is not only within your home, but is also aggregated further up the network as your traffic is joined by that from other homes and eventually entire cities and countries.

Heatwaves and high winds

In Australia, extreme cold is not usually a great concern. Heat is perhaps a more common problem. Our networking devices are likely to perform more slowly when exposed to extreme heat. Even cables can suffer physical damage that may affect the connection.

Imagine your computer fan is not running and the device overheats — it will eventually fail. While the device itself may be fine, it is likely the power supply will struggle in extremes. This same issue can affect the networking equipment that controls our internet connection.

Satellite internet services for rural users can be susceptible to extreme weather, as the satellite signals have to travel long distances in the air.

Radio signals are not usually affected by wind, but hardware such as satellite dishes can be swayed, vibrated, flexed or moved by the wind.

Most of the time, human behavior is the main cause

For most users, the impact of rain will be slight – unless they are physically affected by a significant issue such as submerged cables, or they are trying to use WiFi outside during a storm.

So, can weather affect your internet connection? Absolutely.

Will most users be affected? Unlikely.

So if your favorite Netflix show is running slow during in rainy weather, it’s most likely that the behavior of other humans is to blame — holed up indoors and hitting the internet, just like you.

This article by James Jin Kang, Lecturer, Computing and Security, Edith Cowan University and Paul Haskell-Dowland, Associate Dean (Computing and Security), Edith Cowan University, is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Naabiae Nenu-B is a Medical Health Student and an SEO Specialist dedicated to flushing the web off fake news and scam scandals. He aims at being "Africa's Best Leak and Review Blogger" and that's the unwavering stand of Xycinews Media.

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Technology

The newest Nest Thermostat rarely goes on sale, but it’s $99.98 for Prime Day

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If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on
our website, we may receive an affiliate commission.

The first-generation Nest Learning Thermostat crammed a wide range of brilliant convenience and energy-saving features into a design that was sleek and stylish. Needless to say, it was a total game-changer when it was first released. One simple device could not only save you a bunch of money and make controlling your HVAC system more convenient, but it also looked so cool and futuristic compared to all the regular thermostats out there. After all, they were just a bunch of ugly white boxes. Long story short, the Nest Learning Thermostat had it all.

So many people out there think that Nest’s flagship thermostat is still the best smart thermostat on the planet, and you won’t hear any arguments from us. In fact, we use the latest model in our own home and we love it. The problem is that the Nest Learning Thermostat is quite expensive compared to some of the newer options out there. Even while it’s on sale with a deep discount on Amazon, it’s still nearly $200. The good news is that you can get all the smart features that make Nest’s Learning Thermostat so great in the newer, less expensive model called simply the Nest Thermostat. It retails for $130 and that’s already a bargain, but pop over to Amazon right now and you’ll see that the Nest Thermostat is on sale with a rare discount for Prime Day that drops it to the lowest price ever!

The newest Nest Thermostat doesn’t have the same sleek stainless steel design as the flagship model. But if you ask us, it features a different design that’s just as stylish. The face of the new Nest has a unique mirror finish with a digital display underneath it, and it comes in four different colors to match any home decor. Most importantly, of course, the Nest Thermostat includes all of the important smart features from the flagship model. You’ll be able to control your thermostat from anywhere using the Nest app or your voice thanks to Google Assistant and Alexa support, and you’ll save plenty of money on your energy bill thanks to Nest’s intelligent features that tune your settings constantly and learn from your behavior.

With a list price of just $130, Google’s newest Nest Thermostat is a terrific value. All things considered, it may very well be the best value out there and it’s going to pay for itself in savings on your energy bills. But if you head over to Amazon right now and pick one up, you’ll pay just $99.98!

The only bad news is that we’ve seen this discount disappear already on a few different color options, so you probably don’t have much time left if you want to get in on the action. If you do miss out on this deal, the good news is that you can still snag the flagship Nest Learning Thermostat for just $199.

Google Nest Thermostat – Smart Thermostat for Home – Programmable Wifi Thermostat – Snow Price:$99.98 Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Google Nest Learning Thermostat – Programmable Smart Thermostat for Home – 3rd Generation Nest… List Price:$207.99 Price:$199.00 You Save:$8.99 (4%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now

Here are some of the important details:

  • The Nest Thermostat is an ENERGY STAR-certified smart thermostat that combines efficiency with convenience
  • Works with or without a C wire in most homes
  • Certain setups require a C wire or a power accessory, including heating only, cooling only, zone controlled, and heat pump systems
  • Nest’s learning features let the thermostat automatically turn your AC or heat off when you leave, and back on when you arrive home
  • Controllable using the Nest app on iOS and Android devices, or with voice commands thanks to support for Alexa and Google Assistant
  • The special “Savings Finder” feature suggests tweaks to your schedule to help you save even more money while still remaining comfortable
  • Monitors your HVAC system and sends you an alert if something isn’t working properly

Google Nest Thermostat – Smart Thermostat for Home – Programmable Wifi Thermostat – Snow Price:$99.98 Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Google Nest Learning Thermostat – Programmable Smart Thermostat for Home – 3rd Generation Nest… List Price:$207.99 Price:$199.00 You Save:$8.99 (4%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now


Follow @BGRDeals on Twitter to keep up with the latest and greatest deals we find around the web. Prices subject to change without notice and any coupons mentioned above may be available in limited supply.

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Keep your allergies at bay with this Prime Day deal on air purifiers

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Chris Hachey handles e-commerce and sponsored content for BGR. He has worked as an editor and writer for over a decade for various publications and distribution services. He focuses on consumer products to help you find the best of what’s on the market. When he’s not searching for the top deals, he’s likely watching his favorite sports teams or walking around his hometown with his fiancée and his dog.

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Technology

Amazon’s Prime Day smart TV prices are so low, it seems like someone made a mistake

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If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on
our website, we may receive an affiliate commission.

If you’re a BGR Deals reader, you’ve undoubtedly been following along with our coverage all day and you’ve saved a ton of cash on all the most popular products out there. Highlights from our coverage so far include FREE MONEY from Amazon (send yourself a $40 eGift card, get a free $10 Amazon credit), deep discounts on pretty much every popular Apple device you can think of including AirPods Pro and the Apple Watch, a new all-time low price on the hot new TP-Link Kasa smart plugs that everyone loves so much, the best Instant Pot deals of the year with prices starting at just $49.99, AirPods 2 for just $99.99, the crazy wireless camera that lets your smartphone see anywhere for an all-time low price of $28.85, the Fire TV Stick Lite for a new all-time low price of $17.99 and the Fire TV Stick 4K for an all-time low of $24.99 instead of $50, the $80 Echo Show 5 for the all-time low price of $44.99, an Echo Show 5 and Blink Mini Cam bundle for just $10 more, the best-selling Echo Dot for only $19.99, the new 4th-generation Echo Dot for half price at $24.99, the $50 Echo Auto that adds hands-free Alexa to your car for an all-time low of $14.99 or the $98 Echo Auto bundle with 6 months of Amazon Music Unlimited for the same crazy price of $14.99, Echo Buds true wireless earbuds starting at just $79.99 instead of $120, and so much more.

All of those deals are fantastic indeed, but there’s also a slew of Fire TV deals that you need to check out right now. Incredibly, a whopping 18 different smart TV deals are available right now on the site!

The Fire TV lineup is neck and neck with Roku in terms of popularity among our readers (there are a bunch of excellent Roku deals available right now at Amazon by the way, including the hot new Roku Express 4K+ for just $29.99). Now, some of the best products in Amazon’s Fire TV portfolio are even more affordable thanks to deep discounts.

There is perhaps no streaming media player at the $50 price point that comes anywhere close to matching the Fire TV Stick 4K, which is on sale right now for $39.99. But if you’re in the market for a new smart TV, there are so many deals you need to see. Amazon is offering incredible discounts on 18 different Fire TV Edition televisions ranging in size from 24 inches all the way up to 70 inches. “Fire TV Edition” means Amazon’s Fire TV streaming software is built right into the TV, so you don’t need to worry about getting a separate media player.

Prices start at just $99.99 for an Insignia 24-inch Smart Fire TV, and the #1 best-seller of the bunch is the Toshiba 32-inch Smart Fire TV that’s on sale for $129.99 instead of $200. You can also pick up Insignia’s 43-inch Smart Fire TV for $219.99, down from $320, and Toshiba’s 50-inch Smart Fire TV that typically sells for $430 is on sale for $309.99.

Want to go bigger? Don’t worry because Amazon’s got you covered. The Insignia 65-inch Smart 4K Fire TV that normally sells for $630 is down to just $449.99 right now, and the massive Insignia 70-inch Smart 4K Fire TV that retails for $700 is on sale for just $529.99 if you’re a Prime member. That price is so low, it seems like someone made a mistake!

You can see all 18 deals on this special Amazon page, and you’ll find a few of our favorites down below.


Fire TV Sticks

  • The Fire TV Stick 4K is Amazon’s most powerful streaming media player ever with the popular dongle form factor
  • Supports all of your favorite streaming services like Netflix, HBO Max, Apple TV+, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Peacock, Paramount+, Discovery+, and so much more.
  • You can also stream for free with Tubi, Pluto TV, IMDb TV, and other free streaming services
  • Plenty of games and other apps to choose from in Amazon’s app store
  • The included Alexa voice remote lets you control your content and more with your voice

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa Voice Remote (includes TV controls) | Dolby Vision… List Price:$39.99 Price:$24.99 You Save:$15.00 (38%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Fire TV Stick Lite with Alexa Voice Remote Lite (no TV controls) | HD streaming device List Price:$29.99 Price:$17.99 You Save:$12.00 (40%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Fire TV 4K Essentials Bundle including Fire TV Stick 4K, Remote Cover (Red) and USB Power Cable… List Price:$70.97 Price:$55.97 You Save:$15.00 (21%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Fire TV Gaming Bundle including Fire TV Stick 4K and Luna Controller List Price:$119.98 Price:$73.98 You Save:$46.00 (38%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now


Fire TV Edition Televisions

INSIGNIA NS-70DF710NA21 70-inch Smart 4K UHD – FireTV, Released 2020 List Price:$699.99 Price:$529.99 You Save:$170.00 (24%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Insignia NS-24DF310NA21 24-inch Smart HD 720p TV – Fire TV List Price:$169.99 Price:$99.99 You Save:$70.00 (41%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Toshiba 32LF221U21 32-inch Smart HD 720p TV – Fire TV, Released 2020 List Price:$199.99 Price:$129.99 You Save:$70.00 (35%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Insignia NS-43DF710NA21 43-inch Smart 4K UHD – Fire TV, Released 2020 List Price:$319.99 Price:$219.99 You Save:$100.00 (31%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
Toshiba 50LF621U21 50-inch Smart 4K UHD with Dolby Vision – Fire TV, Released 2020 List Price:$429.99 Price:$309.99 You Save:$120.00 (28%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
All-New Insignia 55 inch NS-55F301NA22 F30 Series LED 4K UHD Smart Fire TV, Released 2021 List Price:$499.99 Price:$349.99 You Save:$150.00 (30%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now
INSIGNIA NS-65DF710NA21 65-inch Smart 4K UHD – Fire TV, Released 2020 List Price:$629.99 Price:$449.99 You Save:$180.00 (29%) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now



Follow @BGRDeals on Twitter to keep up with the latest and greatest deals we find around the web. Prices subject to change without notice and any coupons mentioned above may be available in limited supply.

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