Smartphone Wi-Fi

When your smartphone decides that your Wi-Fi link isn't good enough and automatically goes looking for a better connection it can cause your connection to drop out. Here's what to do when smartphone Wi-Fi keeps disconnecting during transfers. (See also: The 23 best smartphones: The best phone you can buy in 2014.)

QUESTION I've used an Eye-Fi card to transfer photos from a camera to my phone as I take them, so I can upload them directly to Facebook and Instagram. This all worked flawlessly until I upgraded to a Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

Now, the transfer works as before, but the Wi-Fi link keeps disconnecting and reconnecting all the time, which really slows down transfers. Can you suggest what might be wrong here?

HELPROOM ANSWER This is often caused when the phone decides that your Wi-Fi link isn't good enough and automatically goes looking for a better connection. This is based not only on signal strength, but also the stability of your internet connection. When your phone is connected to your camera, there is no internet connection at all, which causes the phone to reject the connection due to poor internet performance. This is based on the rather rash assumption that all Wi-Fi connections are to be used for connecting to the internet.

Thankfully, you can disable this feature quite easily by disabling an option in the advanced Wi-Fi settings on your phone.

Go to your phone's Settings, then select Connections, followed by Wi-Fi. Now enter the advanced menu by tapping your phone's menu button and selecting 'Advanced'. In this section, make sure 'Auto network switch' is turned off.

Other handsets may have slightly differently named options. Look for 'Check for internet service' or 'Avoid poor networks' and make sure that these are also disabled. The phone should no-longer unnecessarily drop the connection to your camera.

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