It’ll depend on a number of factors, like how many devices are on your network, what they’re doing, what time it is and what speed you’ve signed up for. (Need a refresher on what’s affecting your speed? Take a look at our bandwidth breakdown blog.)
How to Check Your Internet Connection SpeedThat’s where Internet speed tests come in: at the click of a button, you can check your Internet connection speed, also known as your bandwidth.
They usually tell you the same things: your download speed, your upload speed and ping.
Why Test Your Internet Connection RegularlyJust like getting an annual physical, checking your Internet speed regularly can alert you to connection diagnostics.
What’s Affecting Your Internet Speed Test ResultsNo test is 100 percent accurate, but these few factors can affect your outcome:
- Time of Day — Internet usage grows heavier during the evening hours (think: post-dinner). Try running tests throughout the day to get a clearer picture of your Internet connection.
- Wired or Wireless? A wired connection is always strongest, so for optimal results, connect your computer to your modem. Keeping a wired connection isn’t possible for all your devices, so for those that can’t, try keeping close to your modem/router. The farther away a signal has to travel, the slower it may be.
1. Restart your modem and router.
Everything needs a little reboot every now and then, including your Internet equipment. This is especially the case if your equipment is older and working in overdrive.
Need a refresher on how to restart these? First, you’ll unplug both, and wait about one minute. Then, plug just the modem back in, and wait another minute. After that time has elapsed, plug in your router, and wait a little longer for the processes to get rolling.
2. Limit other online activities.
If you’re performing other online activities — like watching a livestream or downloading the Fortnite update — while you check your Internet connection speed, your results may look a little lackluster. It’s best to close all apps on the device you’re using to check your speeds.
For a truer result, you’ll want little to no competing Internet usage. So, yes, that will also mean you’ll want to turn off whatever’s streaming in the other room. And, there are some devices, like some of that smart technology, that you may not want to disconnect, so you’ll have to take those into account when you see your results.
3. Restart your computer.
Just like your modem and router, your computer needs an occasional restart, too.
4. Choose an HTML Internet speed test.
There are two types of tests: Flash-based and HTML5. You’ll want the latter, as Flash is a resource-intensive plugin that can also skew your results.
As a note, many offered by Internet service providers are Flash-based, and others can be distinguished easily through a web search.