Speed Test 101: How to Check if

    Your Internet Is Ultrafast

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    Posted on: November 30, 2022

    When you’re gaming, streaming films or video calling loved ones online, a speedy broadband connection is essential.

    A slow internet speed can lead to downloads taking forever, frustration when playing your favourite games and jumpy video calls.

    What is a speed test?

    Don’t bang your head on your keyboard just yet. A speed test will let you know how fast your internet connection is and if your broadband provider could be doing more.

    How do speed tests work?

    Speed tests measure your broadband connection’s current speed and how quickly your connection can upload and download information.

    A speed test measures the following:

    • When the speed test begins, a signal is sent to the test server, which sends a signal back. The time it takes is measured in milliseconds (ms)
    • While the speed of the connection is essential, the variation is important too. Jitter measures the consistency of the response time. This is also measured in milliseconds
    • Download speed. This measures the rate at which data is transferred from the internet to your device. This test is done by downloading a file from the test server. Download speed is measured in megabits per second (mbps)
    • Upload speed. The reverse of download speed, this measures the rate data is transferred from your device to the internet. This is also measured in megabits per second

    Why is a speed test so important?

    A speed test can be a good way of diagnosing any issues with your internet speed.

    If you’ve been experiencing issues downloading files or got to the point where you can’t use Zoom anymore, a speed test should be your first port of call.

    That way, you can see if any faults lie with your devices or your broadband connection.

    What can I use a speed test on?

    You can run a speed test on any device with access to a browser. This means you can check the broadband speed of laptops, desktop computers, mobile phones, tablets, smart TVs and even gaming consoles.

    How can I make sure my speed test is as accurate as possible?

    Here are our top tips for making sure your speed test is as precise as can be.

    • Restart your device beforehand. This will close any processes that are running slowly and could affect the results of your test
    • Clear your browser’s cache, especially if you’re repeating a speed test. If you already have the downloaded files in your browser, this could affect the results
    • Close applications working in the background and disconnect other devices. These can interfere with download and upload speeds
    • Run the speed test in different rooms of your home. That way, you can see if the signal is particularly weak in a specific spot
    • Use the same browser. Different browsers can provide different results, so using the same one for each test will minimise any variances
    • Measure your speed at different times of the day. Broadband speed rates can vary depending on how many people are online… even the weather! We recommend measuring three different speeds and taking an average

    What is a good speed test result?

    The honest answer is that it depends on what you want to use your broadband for. If you use your broadband for gaming, streaming or video calls, you’re likely to need a faster connection than someone who occasionally checks their email and social media accounts.

    The best thing is to look at the speeds your broadband provider promised when you signed up and see how your current rate compares. Broadband providers can only advertise download speeds available to at least 50% of their customer base at peak times.

    What can I do if my broadband speed is slow?

    Many broadband providers have signed up to Ofcom’s voluntary code of practice for broadband speeds.

    When you sign up for a broadband contract, your provider must give you a minimum guaranteed speed. If your speed falls below this, your provider must improve it. If they can’t do this within a month, you are entitled to receive compensation.

    Curious to see what your broadband speed is?

    We have a speed test on our website that you can use to see your current speed.

    There are no forms to fill in, no painfully slow ads to view and best of all, it only takes ten seconds. Just click the button, and we’ll do the rest!

    Our full fibre broadband can give you an incredible 1000mbps per second, up to 20% faster than the UK average. That means no matter what you’re doing; our ultra-fast broadband will always be able to keep up.

    Visit our internet speed test checker today and see what you could be missing out on.

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