If your home is like most, having good broadband speed is key to keeping everyone happy and, let’s face it, sane. High speed internet allows the parents of today to do everything from telecommute to help the kids with homework, and even stream a movie for a family movie night.
If you’ve ever gotten the dreaded “buffering” notice, especially when in the middle of your favourite Netflix episode, you know the frustration of a slow and sputtering internet!
You may be wondering, what is considered to be a good internet speed anyway? And is there an easy way to tell without getting a computer science degree? The good news is, testing your broadband speed is not as complicated as you might think. In fact, it’s nothing to be intimidated by.
For a quick broadband speed test, just go to a broadband speed checker like this one and run the test in the browser of your choice. This should give you a decent result that you can compare to the broadband services you’ve been paying for to see if they match up. It’s worth noting, though, that if you’re paying for “up to” a certain speed then it’s not unusual to get a speed slightly slower than that.
After this test, if your not happy with your wifi services it’s easy to make a change. For a better deal visit Simply Switch, which easily allows you to compare different internet services and choose the one that will be the best deal for you.
Broadband speeds are measured in Mbps, which stands for megabits per second. The higher the Mbps, the better the broadband speed. Your current plan might promise speeds up to 76 Mbps, and you might really be getting around 74 Mbps. This is a fair rate, and should be sufficient to stream video, even if there are multiple people streaming at once.
It is good to know that you might get different speeds on different devices. A desktop computer plugged directly into an ethernet cable might be fastest, followed by a laptop connected to Wifi, with a mobile phone connected to Wifi being the slowest of all. You have probably experienced how it might be faster to load things on your desktop than on your phone, especially in the case of downloading large files.
Broadband speed can also vary depending on the time of day. You will probably get a better speed at 3 in the morning rather than at 3 in the afternoon, because there a fewer people online at 3 in the morning. Because of this, you may wish to perform a few speed tests spaced out over three or four days in order to get a fair estimate of what your average broadband speed is.
If you’re not happy with your broadband speed, you may wish to change service providers or pay your current provider for a better package. In most cases, as long as you’re not being inconvenienced by lag time and buffering, you’re probably at a sufficient speed. But if you’re paying for a higher speed and your speed tests are showing that your broadband is consistently much lower than that, it may be time to contact your service provider.
What do you do when the Wifi lags? Let me know in the comments below!