Whenever you go online you most probably do so through WiFi. Because wireless networks are so popular it makes sense to ensure the top performance with efficient WiFi analyzer tools.
So what are those WiFi analyzer apps and how does one use them? A WiFi analyzer app detects all available WiFi networks around and should provide you with detailed info on every network it found. You should be able to see which channels networks use, the signal strengths, WiFi encryption methods used, etc.
Why can it be rather useful to know which channel a wireless network operates on? Because in a WiFi crowded space, where every neighbor has their own network, overlapping channels is the most common reason of a slower connection. When you figure out which channels are the least crowded and switch to one of those you'll see the immediate difference in your WiFi performance.
A WiFi analyzer app will be able to help you choose the most suitable WiFi network and select the most efficient WiFi channel for your router thanks to comprehensive visual graphs.
High-quality Mac WiFi analyzer tools have the possibility to create accurate WiFi signal strength heatmaps, where you'll be able to clearly see and analyze the areas with the strongest, not so strong, and the weakest signal and decide how you can mend the issues.
Let’s take a look at some situations when Mac WiFi analyzer tools come in handy:
Check our picks for the best WiFi analyzer apps on Windows.
Here we are overviewing 8 best WiFi analyzer apps for Mac highlighting their pros and cons:
Read, try, see what works best for you and your wireless network.
With the help of NetSpot one can filter out the issues with and improve network coverage, performance, signal level, interference, access points configuration, etc.
Additionally, NetSpot WiFi analyzer tool lets you evaluate WLAN interference and decide which wireless channels are better to be used by your access points. The professional and comprehensive report provides you with the most complete information on the network.
Wifi Scanner by AccessAgility LLC is next WiFi analyzer app for Mac on our list that also detects access points and clients in ad-hoc mode in case the SSID is broadcasted. WiFi Scanner Mac WiFi analyzer tool offers WiFi download and upload speed testing to uncover possible issues. It can also help you detect unauthorized devices on your wireless network with the help of IP scanner.
WiFi Scanner is good for wireless site surveys, wifi analysis, wireless discovery, WiFi networks connection. The app shows the BSSID/MAC addresses of access points and displays signal strength in dBm.
iStumbler wifi analyzer app for Mac will display networks according to their types, i.e. Bluetooth, Bonjour or AirPort. Thanks to a friendly interface it is easy to see the open networks and secured ones, signal strength of each available network, and the stability of a selected network.
The application includes an AirPort plugin showing more accurate information like dBm values.
Use WiFi Explorer for WiFi analysis. Detect issues that may be affecting connection and the performance of your network, such as channel conflicts, overlapping and configuration issues, etc. This app can also help discover open, ad-hoc and rogue access points.
WiFi Explorer detects 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax wireless networks, works with 2.4 and 5GHz channel bands, and 20, 40, 80 and 160 MHz channels. This wifi analyzer tool can keep an eye on network signal strength consistently and provide you with metrics and network details that can be exported to a CSV file.
Next on this list of wifi analyzer tools is KisMAC — an open-source wifi analyzer application for Mac OS that can map wireless networks and lay out the info on their performance so you can easily troubleshoot. With KisMAC you can see clients and SSIDs (cloaked, hidden or closed).
KisMac supports Apple AirPort extreme and some other USB devices, which is a great advantage. KisMAC is not an amateur tool though, it is rather intended for professional users.
Apple computers have a built-in free WiFi analyzer Mac users can easily use to troubleshoot issues with loading webpages, streaming music or video content, or sending or receiving email messages, just to give some examples.
This analyzer is called Wireless Diagnostics, and here’s how you can open it:
Once Wireless Diagnostics is open on your Mac, you should be able to see all wireless networks available in your area and compare their settings and strength. Yes, the tool is pretty basic, but that makes it easy enough to use even for casual Mac users who know nothing about WiFi analysis.
inSSIDer is a capable Mac WiFi analyzer that’s been serving its users since 2007. The tool combines advanced WiFi analysis capabilities with a modern user interface, delivering an attractive solution aimed at power users who want as much information as possible without spending hundreds of dollars on a professional tool.
While the basic version of inSSIDer can do a lot for free, you can supercharge your copy of inSSIDer by subscribing to MetaGeek Plus. Some of the features that you can unlock include WiFi scanning with packet capture and RF spectrum analysis, the ability to capture network snapshots, and seamless team collaboration.
You can download this WiFi analyzer Mac free of charge and use it for up to 15 days, which should be enough to troubleshoot even the most serious WiFi issues you can encounter. AirRadar 5 uses GPS technology to place all available networks on a map so that you can easily locate sources of a strong signal.
This WiFi analyzer for Mac shines the most when used for large-scale surveillance projects. Simply place your MacBook on the passenger seat, launch AirRadar 5, and start surveying your neighborhood. The tool can speak new network names, so you’ll always know when a new network has been discovered.
A WiFi analyzer is a software that can detect the surrounding wireless networks and gather detailed information about them. It should be able to provide you with such data as which channels networks use, their signal strength, encryption methods, etc.
With a WiFi analyzer app you'll easily get the information about surrounding networks, analyze them and select the best WiFi channel for your router. Use a high-quality WiFi analyzer in order to create accurate wireless signal strength heatmaps for visual and comprehensive depiction of your coverage.
If your WiFi network has a lot of neighboring networks, then most probably some channels overlap, which is a common cause for a slower connection. A WiFi analyzer can help you find the least crowded channels, which should consequently help you achieve a better wireless performance.
Here is a quick glance at the best 8 WiFi analyzer apps:
Looking for the best app to use with your mobile phone? We've put together our lists of the best WiFi analyzer apps for Android and the best WiFi analyzer apps for iOS.
Here’s what you need to do to run WiFi diagnostics on your Mac:
Just keep in mind that the built-in Wireless Diagnostics tool is pretty barebones, so consider installing a third-party WiFi analyzer Mac, such as NetSpot.
To discover the best WiFi channel for your Mac, you need to use a WiFi analyzer tool to scan all networks broadcasting in your area and determine which channels are used the least. To achieve the best performance possible, use only non-overlapping channels (1, 6, and 11).