Looking for a way to increase your internet speed? Can’t figure out why your internet is slow? Maybe you’re wondering whether an upgrade is worth it, or if there’s a quick fix that can boost your speed. What kind of speed do you need for different online activities? Read on to find out more!
We all know when our internet appears to be slow or fast. But what exactly is internet speed, and how is it measured?
Well, one good way to think of internet speed is like traffic on the road. How many cars can travel at once? But, of course, this depends on how many lanes there are. And now and then, there’s a lot of traffic.
Your internet’s bandwidth speed is precisely like this. The amount of data that can transfer between your device and the internet at a given time depends on how much bandwidth there is in your package. So, unless your internet plan includes a good speed, your internet activities are limited to a certain point.
You may need the internet for everyday activities like checking your emails or searching for information. In this case, an internet connection that’s too fast will make you overpay. But if you do more strenuous things online, such as gaming, watching TV and films, or even remote working and Zoom, you may want to consider upgrading,
Sure, you see internet providers advertising brilliant speeds. However, these are the fastest possible speeds – it isn’t surprising that we don’t get these speeds all the time. Your internet’s ultimate speed is made up of factors entirely outside your control.
If your speed hasn’t been up to snuff lately, you’ve probably done a speed test to see your speed. But what kind of internet speed is usual, anyway? What can you expect from a good internet connection?
Well, your internet speed varies depending on where you live. However, the typical global median download speed is about 60 Mbps download and 25 Mbps for fixed broadband. In specific countries, the average is a bit different.
A faster-than-average WiFi speed would be 100 Mbps or more. Though these blistering speeds are possible, they’re unnecessary for the average person.
An illustrative internet speed depends on what you want to use it for. These days, with frequent video calls, live streaming of videos and TV, online gaming and large file downloads, a moderately fast internet speed is vital for many people. This means looking for an internet connection of over 50 megabits per second.
As we touched upon, mere internet browsing is one of the less bandwidth-intensive things you can do on the internet. So, you don’t need to worry about too much speed when visiting typical websites. 10 Mbps is your absolute limit for this general internet use.
The necessary speed you need to stream your content depends on what you’re streaming. For example, if it’s the HD video you’re interested in, you will need at least 5 Mbps. Even at this, you’ll need to be the only person using the network for this to work.
With 4K streaming or UHD, however, 20 to 25 Mbps are more like it. On top of this, different streaming providers have their bandwidth recommendations. One example is Disney Plus 4K’s requirement of 25 Mbps. Netflix 4K recommends the same. Netflix and Disney are content with just 5 Mbps for high definition.
Like with streaming, the amount of bandwidth you’ll need for online gaming varies with the quality of the game. Typical online games must establish a basic internet connection without too much speed – if you’re playing online chess or even not-so-graphically heavy shooter games. However, suppose you want to play high-octane competitive and graphically rich games, like many modern first-person shooters. In that case, you’ll need an internet connection to handle anything you throw at it.
Most video games don’t use more than a couple of hundred megabytes per hour. So you won’t get too many issues with a speed like this. That said, if you want to ensure that you don’t experience lagging issues, you will want at least 20 Mbps of bandwidth for your device. If your game requires quick reactions and aiming, your ping should be below 70 ms or even under 40 ms.
Another facet of playing online games is downloading the game, to begin with. Video games generally only partially fit on the disc you buy, if you even purchase a physical copy. Whether it’s innumerable updates or even bonus content, you must download large files associated with your game. With this in mind, you should look for an internet connection with a fast download speed so you can get right into playing!
Again, different gaming platforms have their recommendations. But if you want to download large games pretty often, a 10 Mbps internet connection is what you’ll need.
We’ve all had to get used to using Zoom in recent years. For some of us, we’ve had to get a crash course in how to use certain facets of the internet and what constitutes an acceptable speed. Some people have even been dragged online for the first time! This increase is reflected in the skyrocketing investment in internet infrastructure that has occurred since the beginning of COVID-19.
Video calls are two-directional. So, they need both decent download and upload speeds for optimal functionality. But, of course, the bandwidth you need also varies with how many people you’re talking to simultaneously.
So, what speed does a one-on-one video call need? With today’s HD webcams (you can make out a person’s facial features!), you will need between 1.5 Mbps and 4 Mbps. This includes both upload and download speeds. Any advanced software or features are likely going to need a little more.
But what about a group call? Skype says you need about 8 Mbps to prevent crashing during a 7-person call. And yet, Google Meet HD says you only need 4 Mbps for a 10-person call. It varies depending on the size and quality of different participants’ videos, but it’s clear that you need a little bit extra for a video conference to go smoothly.
Live streams require an even more extreme upload speed than video calls! You need a very stable internet connection if you want your live streams to go smoothly.
Most popular streaming platforms recommend 6 Mbps for smooth and stable live streaming. Of course, you’ll need a 3 Mbps minimum to ensure your stream doesn’t crash. However, you may need even faster internet if you intend to stream yourself playing an online game with several devices connected.
You don’t necessarily need extreme and pricey speeds for streaming, but it can help for multiple device use. Compare packages to find out more.
Just because you have more than one device connected to your network simultaneously doesn’t mean you inherently need a lightning-fast connection to support this. If the other devices provide limited functionality or are merely connected most of the time, you shouldn’t run into too many issues.
However, if you use these various devices for more extreme internet surfing, you’ll need a much greater speed to simultaneously support all those intensive online activities.
For a mere a couple of devices, 10 to 15 Mbps should suffice, while you’ll need 25 Mbps to support four devices and a full 50 Mbps for eight.
Now that you know what internet speed you need to do what you want on the internet, you should understand what internet speed you need. So, how do you make your internet faster?
Of course, one of the quickest ways to get a faster internet speed is to go right ahead and upgrade your connection. Whether it’s fibre optics, a beamforming router, or a different internet plan, upgrading your internet connection to something more appropriate for your needs is a great idea. Compare different types of internet to find the right one for you.
In the past, broadband speeds were limited. This restriction was thanks to the copper wire, which providers used until recently. However, now, we’ve upgraded to fibre-optic cables. Fibre optics can transmit data at several times the speed! Fibre optic cables are also much more durable, with the ability to withstand erosion, lightning, and other weather-related problems. In Australia, the high-speed fibre-optic network is known as the National Broadband Network, or NBN. Take a look at some NBN plans today to get optimum speeds.