I tackle the topic of channel overlap in wireless. Some people may refer to this as co-channel interference. Others use the term co-channel cooperation or even co-channel contention. The latter of the two are more accurate terms to use.
But first, lets talk about what channel overlap is. I’m referring to two or more access points providing service for the same area on the same channel.
Why is this a big deal? When two or more access points hear each other on the same channel it becomes the capacity of one access point. This is because of the contention the access points must face when vying for air time. It creates more overhead which leads to lower throughput and more latency.
What are some ways to mitigate channel overlap?
The only ways to mitigate channel overlap involve proper planning which includes a good channel re-use plan, pre-deployment surveys to determine what channels are already in use in your deployment area, and a validation survey to verify any channel overlap.
In addition to the above steps, some other ways to mitigate channel overlap include:
- Turning off 2.4 GHz radios
- Use directional antennas
- Use 20 MHz channel widths
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