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Understanding Your Internet Speed

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As a Internet consumer, when you purchase a plan that promises 600 mbps (mega byte per second) Internet speed, what you expect is just that. Whether you actually need this fast speed is another issue (most homes downloading movies\shows, using Netflix and other channels will be fine with just 100 mbps or less). That said, when your Internet signal arrives at the router\modem, depending on how many devices are using WIFI at the same time, this signal is further divided between them all equally, which would diminish your full signal per device. This may be an issue for some. Also, the further away you are from the router\modem, the weaker the signal and the more walls in the way of the signal also causes this.

The modem\router bandwidth can also play a role. The 2.5 Ghz, is a band that sends the signal much further but it is a more crowded Internet highway and used by many other home appliances to communicate with. The 5.0 Ghz is a much less crowded bandwidth but does have shorter range. The download speeds for the 5.0 are MUCH faster than the 2.5, so keep that in mind when setting up your modem\router. Some will determine which bandwidth is best to use and toggle between them, others, you select one or the other.

Just because you are talking to tech support at XYX company of your ISP, do not assume they have the same knowledge base when troubleshooting your problem. I recently spent hours on the phone regarding Internet speed and they ALL missed the most important point to tell a customer regarding Internet speeds.

What was this?

In some cases, your router\modem may be incapable of providing the high speed you are paying for, so you need to look at their specs for the device. For example, if your plan is 700 mbps but your router\modem can only give you 400 mbps, then you MUST get a new one with at least that 700 mbps specification.

The other thing is, and I was never asked this by company techs, how do you connect to the Internet? If you use WIFI, your speeds will be dramatically less than your plan. If you use an Ethernet cable to connect directly to your modem\router, you WILL get close to the Internet speed plan when you do a simple Internet speed test (just search for Internet speed test).

How much speed difference?

In my case, with a 600 mbps plan, using a Ethernet cable, the speed test showed 550 mbps download, 80 mbps upload. This was without using VPN. With VPN, the signal dropped to 276 mbps download, 22 mbps upload.

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When running the test just with WIFI and i was literally within two feet of the modem\router, results were (without VPN) 45 mbps download and 20 mbps upload! When using VPN, it dropped to 7-10 mbps download and 1-4 mbps upload.

As one can see, how you connect to the modem\router is critical for getting the most out of your speed from the ISP. None of the ISP technies talked about any of this as to why my Internet speeds were slow, LOL. Using WIFI, as one can see, dramatically reduces the Internet speed and this will be always true.

Of course, the technies suggested I get a new router\modem so it could handle 600 mbps, since it was a free upgrade, I did. But my existing one, according to their specs, was good to 700 mbps! So, I really did not need to because when using Ethernet cable to connect, I was getting nearly 600 mbps!

Using a VPN will also decrease the speeds but it is still quite high. Look, movies movies and TV shows one downloads are between 1-2 gigs, if your download speeds are 4 mbps or more, the wait time is about five minutes. If the download speed is 8 mpbs, wait time is a minute or two. If you use online services for TV and movies, a plan with just 50 mbps should be plenty and quality is still good.

In the end, just do a speed test with and without an Ethernet cable to see what your situation reveals.

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