There are several advantages of Wi-Fi as we discussed previously but all is not hunky-dory in the wireless networking scenario. There are several challenges in front of the industry and hundreds of thousands of executives are working to solve these and provide unhindered wireless access to users. Listed below are the obvious demerits of Wi-Fi networks.
Connectivity. There are no wires to connect to the Wi-Fi network but then the area of the hotspot is very very limited and you get out of the area you are disconnected. This is perhaps the greatest disadvantages, while it promises mobility and flexible locational computing, you have to be within 100-150 ft of the base station (indoors) and about 100-300 meters (outdoors) to get connected. Suppose you are traveling in small towns or far flung rural locales you will have to depend on traditional wired networks as enabling Wi-Fi across the country would be an expensive propositions. Though some providers claim that they have enabled their services across all the highways the quality of access is questionable.
High consumption of Electricity. Wi-Fi technologies are power hungry and suck out your electricity like water. This presents a clear disadvantage for users of laptops and other battery dependent devices. The battery industry is still grappling with technology which will enable them to manufacture long lasting, compact sized and light weight batteries. If Wi-Fi consumes so much electricity it would be a damper on the very concept of mobility because you will have to look for the nearest power point if you wish to use Wi-Fi internet or any other applications over the network.
Radio wave conflicts. If you are using your Wi-Fi near other radiation emitting devices such as microwave ovens, cordless phones, the resulting conflicts between devices and networks tend to slow down your Wi-Fi device. In older versions of Wi-Fi the conflicts were so high that if the user were to go near the microwave the data transfer would immediately stop.
Data safety. The greatest challenge faced by Wi-Fi providers today is how to prevent outsiders from accessing your data. Hardware providers are working hard to provide the necessary safety but no breakthrough has been achieved thus far. Before investing in Wi-Fi check with the hardware guys about precautions to save your data. Currently the Wi-Fi Protected Access technology is used to secure data transfer and encryption over networks.