Go to a public place, maybe in a mall and randomly activate WiFi on your device. You will notice that in a second your device will be invaded by tons of WiFi access points. Some are even free and automatically connect, while others need you to access or pay. Of all those networks, your phone or laptop tries to automatically connect to a network that you think is the best. But sometimes the network it is connected to is just a WiFi hotspot that someone has forgotten to turn off or a slow network. The device connects to a network based on various factors, such as signal strength, security, the stability of a WiFi network, etc.
For this reason, most of the time you are not connected to the best WiFi available near you. Fortunately, there is a way to take control of this entire network classification process. This process is called WiFi network prioritization. In this post, we’ll tell you how you can do it on your Windows PC, Mac, and mobile devices. Therefore, it is possible to choose the preferred network for the connection and obtain fluid connectivity.
Prioritize WiFi networks
1. Windows PC
In Windows 10, when WiFi is enabled on your system, it will only connect to a network you’ve configured to connect automatically. And if that network is not available, it will leave it as it is and will not connect to any other network. Although there are other WiFi options available nearby, you need to manually select a network and connect to it. However, you can change the priority of each connection and make sure that your PC automatically connects to your favorite networks. This is what you need to do to prioritize WiFi networks on your Windows PC.
- Press the Windows icon and look for the command prompt with the search option.
- Right-click the command prompt when it appears and select the option Run as administrator
- Use the following command: netsh wlan shows profiles and press
This will show you a list of all the available networks and networks you have connected in the past. For the next steps, you must first find out which networks you want to prioritize.
- Once this is done, type the following command netsh wlan show interfaces and press Enter
This will show you the name of the adapters you use on your PC to connect to the Internet. It is usually Wi-Fi or Ethernet and if you only use WiFi, the interface name is Wi-Fi by default.
- Finally, to change the network priority, the following command must be entered netsh wlan set profileorder name = “[Network Name]” interface = “Priority [Interface Name” = 1,2,3 … and press
Where Network Name is the name of the WiFi network to which you want to assign priority, the Interface Name is Wi-Fi or Ethernet and 1,2,3 … is the priority number to which you want to assign a network.
Similarly, if you want to assign a second priority to another network, replace the network name and set the priority number to 2 and so on. This way, if the first WiFi network is not available, the computer will automatically try to connect to the next one in the priority list.
Also Read: How To Use Android 9 Pie Lockdown Mode
2. Set the priority of the WiFi network in macOS
Like other operating systems, macOS also allows you to prioritize WiFi networks on your MacBook. This feature has been around for a long time and regardless of the version running on your Macbook, you can still do it. This is a simple procedure to follow:
- Click the WiFi icon located in the upper right corner of the screen.
- Select Open network preferences from the options.
- Once the Network window is open, select Wi-Fi from the menu on the left and click the Advanced button below.
In addition, a list of preferred networks will open. In this list, you will see all available and previously used WiFi networks. These networks are already configured in an order of priority, i.e. the network at the top of the list has the highest priority and vice versa.
- From here you just have to drag and drop those networks in the list to set them according to your preferences.
- Finally, click OK, then click Apply to implement the new WiFi priority setting on the Mac.
3. Prioritize WiFi network on Android devices
There is no dedicated WiFi prioritization feature in the Android operating software. To be honest, I never need it on my phone, since it automatically switches to another network when it stops working. But don’t worry, you can still do it if you wish by using different third-party apps. Moreover, Android is highly customizable and has third-party apps for almost everything. In fact, what we have found effective for this purpose is WiFi Prioritizer. In addition to setting network priorities, this application constantly checks the signal strength and switches to a network with better signal strength. To use the app, you must follow these steps:
- Install the app from the Play Store using this link and then open it. Then, activate the toggle Enabled Scheduled Job.
- Now you can see all your networks saved in a numbered list. The network priority is set in descending order. You can simply drag and organize these networks to change your priority.
Networks will now change automatically based on the priority set in the application. As an additional option, this app also allows you to configure the update interval from its settings menu. Just tap Refresh interval in the menu and choose the interval you want to set. Keep in mind that updating at shorter intervals can consume a lot of battery.
In the same settings menu, you can also set the signal strength of a network to connect. This means that it will switch to a higher priority network if the network meets the established signal strength quota. If the signal strength of the highest priority network is less than 30%, it will not change from the current network.
Please note that if you want to disable the Wi-Fi Prioritizer then simply turn off the toggle Enabled Scheduled Job.
4. Prioritize WiFi Networks On iPhone
Unfortunately, there is no way to set priorities for networks on the iPhone. However, you can do it indirectly by synchronizing it with your MacBook. Setting the network priority in macOS is sufficient for an iOS device. Make sure you prioritize networks on the Mac first and sign in with the same Apple ID on both devices; otherwise, it won’t work. The same can also be done with an iPad and an iPod. As long as they are synchronized with each other and with the same Apple ID, their WiFi networks will have priority.
The disadvantage is that both will work with the same priority and will automatically connect to the same network. Therefore, if you need to connect to different networks, you need to do it manually. Also, if you don’t have a Mac device, you have no other options.
The command-line method for setting the priority works on virtually all versions of Windows. If you do not want to do a long process, select Connect automatically when connecting to a network. This will set that particular network to the highest priority. On other devices, the WiFi priority setting is short and direct. Personally, for me, it worked very well, as I could easily switch from one network to another. We hope these methods work for you too. If there is any query, let us know in the comments.