ASK4 started supplying managed internet services for multi-tenant buildings back in 2000. From 2010 onwards customers were increasingly asking for wireless services, and ASK4 made the jump into wireless shortly afterwards.
Fast-forward to 2017 and ASK4 have now developed a wireless design methodology with Ekahau at the core, with over 150,000 students relying upon their high-speed wireless networks across the UK.
“The majority of our engineers used other design software previously and they found Ekahau considerably easier to use. In fact a lot of our engineers switched to Ekahau before we had even finished the roll-out!”
Jody Botham, Network Architect at ASK4
Jody Botham, Network Architect at ASK4, is part of the team that develop ASK4’s wireless design best practices and methodologies. Last year one of ASK4’s flagship clients approached them with a requirement to upgrade a 1,500 bed, 33 storey student accommodation block with a 200Mbps wireless service.
They also requested that the network delivered 200Mbps no matter where the students were in the building; bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens and other common areas.
“Wi-Fi performance in the accommodation block is a great marketing tool for our clients. If they have wireless that can do 200Mbps they can rent rooms more easily,” explained Jody.
ASK4 firstly calculated the desired network parameters including the signal-to-noise ratio and channel overlap before entering them into the network specification fields within Ekahau Planner.
Next they visited the site to configure Ekahau Planner by checking that real world attenuation values matched those predicted. Jody and his colleague then used Ekahau Planner to create predictive plans for all 33 floors in the building, which in turn were used by the contractors for cabling positions.
After the cabling contractors had finished ASK4 then went back to site and conducted a post-installation survey with Ekahau Site Survey.
The client was so pleased with the results that they commissioned ASK4 to roll out the service to their other two sites in London.
Jody said “This was the first time we had tested our new guidelines at scale and thanks to Ekahau we probably delivered the best wireless network we had ever done. It appears to be giving us considerably more performance and less snagging and rectification issues once a site has gone live.”
ASK4 have subsequently adopted their new methodology across the board, so all of their wireless designs are done to the same best practice guidelines.