Speed Test Results

Running regular internet speed tests can help you better understand your connectivity performance trends and your connection’s maximum speed. However, when you finally get your speed test results, are you able to understand what each metric means? Use this guide and glossary to gain a more comprehensive look into your web connection performance.

What is good internet speed?

According to the FCC, the good internet speed benchmark starts at a minimum download speed of 25 Mbps to perform everyday online tasks. Regarding what speeds you need for these common activities, your connection will need to meet the following minimum download speeds:

  • 1-5 Mbps for email and web browsing
  • 15-25 Mbps for streaming HD video
  • 40-100 Mbps for streaming 4K video and light online gaming
  • 200+ Mbps for streaming 4K video, online gaming, and downloading large files

How to Read Internet Speed Test

An internet speed test is an evaluation of your existing broadband parameters. Speed tests work by sending a file from a speedtest server and analyzing the time it takes to download the file onto your local device (computer, tablet, smartphone, etc.) and then upload it back to the server. Once the test is complete, you’re likely presented with the following terms and correlating metrics measured.

Download speed

Download speed is the time it takes for your web connection to retrieve data from the server. Download speeds are typically far greater than upload speeds. Download speeds are measured in megabits per second (Mbps).

Upload speed

Upload speed is the time it takes for your connection to send data back to the server. Common online tasks like sending emails, video-chatting, and posting photos to social media platforms require responsive upload speeds. Upload speed is also measured in megabits per second. Learn more about download vs upload speeds.

Ping

Ping measures the reaction time of your connection, recording how quickly you’re able to get a response after sending out a request. The lower your ping measurement, the more responsive your connection. Ping is measured in milliseconds (ms). Learn more about ping.

What is good ping for gaming? Ping under 20 ms is considered excellent while ping measuring between 50-100 ms is considered average.

Latency

Though often used interchangeably with ping, latency is the measure of time between a request and a result. Latency rates reveal how much time it takes for a signal to travel to your internet destination server and back. Lower latency means lower lag time, therefore the lower the number, the better. Latency is measured in milliseconds (ms). Learn how to test latency on your network.

Bandwidth

Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data that can be transmitted over your internet connection within a specified amount of time. Bandwidth directly refers to the volume of information that can be sent rather than the speed at which it is sent. Bandwidth is expressed in megabits per second. Learn more about bandwidth.

What is good bandwidth for gaming? At least 10 Mbps can accommodate high-speed connectivity and multiple users playing at a time.

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How do I Speed Up My Internet Connection?

ISP Matters: The most straightforward way to get a faster wifi connection is to choose a different ISP that provides faster service. Simply enter your ZIP code below to get a list of the different Internet providers in your area.

Check Your Tech: Maybe your modem and/or router are obsolete? This sometimes hampers your Internet speed. Check with your ISP to ensure your equipment is up to date. In most cases, they upgrade your setup for free, although a monthly charge may apply. You can also consider purchasing your own modem and router to keep your monthly cost to a minimum. Your ISP maintains a list of third-party equipment compatible with their service. Talk with them to find out what direction is best for you and your family. Learn more about how routers affect internet speed.

Limit Number of Users: Make sure to limit the number of users accessing your wireless router before streaming a movie. Even when subscribing to a fast broadband Internet service, multiple users sharing that service often hampers performance for everyone.

Router Location Matters: Routers are affected by location. Consider placing your wireless router close to your
prime television viewing area to improve the overall streaming experience. Additionally, try to keep any walls between your router and your streaming devices to a minimum. This helps you get the most out of your bandwidth even without spending extra on a high-end router. Certain appliances, most notably microwaves, interfere with your router’s signal. So make sure you place the router where a microwave won’t hamper your WiFi.

Consider a Range Extender: Depending on the layout of your home and the location of your wireless router, you may encounter difficulty keeping a strong Internet signal throughout the residence. Range extenders offer a relatively inexpensive way to spread your wireless signal throughout your home. Expect to pay anywhere from $75 to $150 for a decent model. They typically plug directly into a wall socket, so you are able to place the unit closer to where you do your most bandwidth-intensive Internet activity. Learn more about range extenders.