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Internet Speed and Performance
Monday Feb 17, 2020
Navigating broadband connections can be a little tricky for the average person. Technical jargon can sometimes make internet connections appear more difficult than they seemingly should be.

According to Xfinity, the phone and internet service provider, various components work together to make up the best conditions for internet usage. Upload speed, download speed, ping rate, and whether the internet is wired or wireless all play a role in establishing the master equation. In homes where internet is in constant demand, increased speeds are often necessary.

Bandwidth

Bandwidth refers to the volume of information per unit of time that the connection can handle. Internet connections with a lot of bandwidth can move more data at a faster pace than connections with less bandwidth. The tech information site LiveWire equates bandwidth to plumbing. Having multiple draws on the internet through movie streaming, playing video games, uploading photo files, etc., can slow or stop internet speeds, much in the same way turning on all the faucets in a home will reduce water pressure to each. Too much demand on the bandwidth that cannot adequately handle that demand can cause lag and slow speeds.

Upload, download, and ping

The abbreviation Mbps stands for megabits per second or the rate at which data can be moved in a second. Data travels in two directions through the internet. There is information downloaded from the internet and information uploaded. According to Allconnect, a leading marketplace for comparing home services like cable TV, high-speed internet, energy, and more, downloaded information comes from a server in the form of images, videos, text, or music. Upload speed refers to the data that one sends from a computer to another device or server on the internet. Emails, multiplayer video games, and video calling are examples of instances when upload speeds are important.

Ping rate is another factor. Ookla, the global standard in network testing, says ping is the reaction time of your connection, or how fast you get a response after you've sent out a request. A fast ping means a more responsive connection, especially in applications where timing is everything, like gaming. Ping is measured in milliseconds. Ping latency can cause a delay in the action of a game. That means your shots may be registered behind another player in fast-paced fighting games.

Improve speed

Improving an internet experience requiring fast speeds may involve making changes. Here are some handy tips:

· Use a hard-wired connection that involves an ethernet cord connected to a console or computer directly rather than WiFi. WiFi is convenient, but it almost always runs at lower speeds than a hard line.

· Shut down other programs or devices that may be eating up bandwidth while engaged in the desired activity.

· Test your internet speeds through a reputable third party rather than your internet company's speed meter.

· Consider upgrading bandwidth if you find that your internet speed is continually lacking.

By MS