How To Increase The Speed Of Your Internet Connection

internet connection

How fast is your internet connection? Are you getting the speed that your internet service provider promised you?

A lot of people spend a lot of time wondering why they are stuck.

And why their internet speed is never up to the mark.

In other words, why is there internet connection so slow almost all the time?

If you are one of those people then there is a reasonable chance that you may also suffer from the many issues that other people are suffering.

These issues are the reason why you don’t get fast internet even though you have paid for a fast internet connection.

Sometimes users have connected just a bit too many devices to the same network.

That can slow down the actual speed.

Other times, the user may be using very old hardware which can also slow down internet connection speed.

There are also those times when you have a lot of interference from various other wireless internet signals around you.

What we mean to say is that there are a lot of ways in which your internet speed could slow down.

Here are some ways in which you can help your internet connection to get to top speed in no time.

Before The Actual Tips, First Measure Your Speed

Now, you can’t just go ahead and start implementing techniques to increase your internet connection speed.

For you have to lay the groundwork.

By that we mean you need to alleviate your potentially huge internet speed problem but you need to do two things before that.

These two things are,

  • The amount of speed you are actually getting right now
  • The exact amount of speed you have signed up for with your internet service provider

So prior to launching any speed tests we would advise you that it is always better to just give a little check to your official internet service provider account to observe the amount of speed you have actually paid for.

Let’s take an example.

Some could have subscribed to an internet service via Comcast.

If the user decides to sign up for 100 Mbps internet connection then he/she would have to pay $89.95/month.

The only problem with that is internet service providers such as Comcast don’t really spell out the precise amount of speed that the user will get anywhere on the user’s official account.

The company only states the type of service package that the user has signed up for.

Some users do know the precise speed of their internet connection.

But those users are the ones who have recently changed the actual terms of their account.

Of course, users are free to use the company’s service package name in order to look up that information on the company’s official website too.

Some internet service providers just don’t list of speed maximums and minimums on their official website and/or on user accounts.

In that case, users have to prepare themselves for doing a bit of legwork in order to do some research on what type of service package their internet service provider if offering them.

The one quick way to know for sure how much speed you are getting is to simply contact your internet service provider.

You can either do that via your phone or use the live online chat feature.

That will help you figure out important details about the bitrate that you should get for your subscription package.

While you are at it, you should never forget the part where an internet service provider says “up to”.

Why?

Because all internet service providers advertise their maximum and/or minimum potential speeds that users are likely to experience after they have paid for the service.

However, users should know that they will never actually come close to achieving the speed that internet service providers advertise as their maximum speed.

Moreover, it is also possible that your internet connection speed may even fall well below the advertised minimum speed.

The thing users need to understand here is that advertised speeds are only theoretical minimum or maximum speeds.

And this is a common tactic that internet service providers use in order to attract more customers.

Users whose internet connections fail to achieve the advertised speeds should know that the slow speeds could also be the consequence of the internet service provider sharing their connection’s bandwidth with that of their neighbors.

In turn, that means, at any given point in time, the user’s actual internet speeds will actually vary.

If there are many people on the same network using the same internet connection from the same internet service provider, then the user should expect low speeds.

If there are fewer people, then the speed would increase as common sense dictates.

Moreover, the actual speeds will also take an effect from people around you depending on their online activities.

If someone around you is playing online games or streaming content from Netflix, then there is a good chance that you will suffer slow internet speeds.

Now You Need To Run That Internet Speed Test

The first thing users need to do is to identify the speed that they are supposed to get.

After that, users are free to run multiple internet speed tests.

However, before users can actually go ahead and run those speed tests we would like to recommend that they should turn off any and all other data-intensive online activities.

This usually means that the user will have to,

  • Stop any downloads
  • Turn off all online games
  • Turn off audio streaming or video streaming services.

The other thing users need to know is the more devices they have connected to the same network, the slower internet speeds they will get.

This is something that we will talk about more in the upcoming sections.

For now, make sure you have the least number of devices connected to your network.

That will help you in accurately estimating the actual speed of your internet connection.

In an ideal situation, users will want to run their speed test only during those hours in which they usually use their internet connection.

Hence, for weekdays, that would mean users should run speed tests in the evening hours or even in the morning.

For the weekend, they will have to change.

Mostly, on the weekends, users are free to perform speed tests at any time they want to.

With that said, ultimately, all of this will not matter once the user has launched the speed test.

What will matter of course is the user running both (before making corrections and after making corrections) speed tests at the same time as much as possible.

The other thing that will matter a lot is the actual speed testing website.

In other words, the user has to make sure that he/she is using the same speed testing website.

Now, there are many speed testing websites that you can use with your internet connection.

One of them is Internet Health Test.

wifi router

Most modern users get their internet connection from a WiFi router.

Of course, most people who want to know the exact speed of their internet connection go with Speedtest.net.

But the internet is a big place.

And hence there are many alternatives to Speedtest.net.

Moreover, some also believe that Speedtest.net does not represent the best service for the purpose of measuring one’s internet speed either.

Speed testing websites such as Speedtest.net can only calculate a given user’s internet connection speed via downloading a sample and then uploading the sample to one online server.

In contrast, other speed testing services such as Internet Health Test have the capability to test the actual amount of congestion that is present on the user’s network in order to determine the speed the user is getting from the related internet service provider.

So what should you do?

You should test your internet speed using multiple speed testing services.

Most of these tests take around a minute or so but there are speed testing services that can perform the test in under 30 seconds.

The other thing users have to keep in mind is that sometimes they may notice quite a bit of variation in the speed tests results that different speed testing tools will show them.

The reason for that is also quite simple.

The bandwidth of a user can and does fluctuate a lot throughout the duration of the day.

That happens to us and that will happen to you as well.

So it is perhaps best to do one’s speed tests results over a course of multiple days.

That will give the user a good idea of what kind of speeds his/her internet service provider is offering them via their subscription package.

Now, we’ll take a look at some of the other speed testing tools which are popular among people on the internet.

These are perhaps the most popular speed testing tools on the internet.

There are some others as well but our research shows that these four-speed testing tools should cover just about all of the user’s needs.

Of course, these will provide the user with everything that the user needs to perform an accurate analysis of his/her available download and upload bandwidth.

Users who don’t have any inclination towards using speed testing tools may also opt to measure their internet connection speed the old-fashioned way.

What is that way?

That way is for the user to simply download a file and then record how long did it take the user’s internet connection to download the file.

Needless to say, the user is likely to see a lot of variation across all the different methods.

Therefore, it is perhaps best if the user tries out a few of these services.

And then compare all the readings that one gets from different speed testing tools.

However, in end, the user has to stick with one or at the max two speed testing tools that provide the most consistency.

Now that we have introduced you to how to use speed testing tools let’s take a look at some of the ways you can increase the speed of your internet connection.

Best Tips On How To Increase The Speed of Your Internet Connection

wifi_router

WiFi routers do take out those annoying wires. But they bring in many other problems.

The one thing users should understand right now is that there is no one single way to boost their internet connection speed.

A user may have multiple unrelated reasons for low internet speeds.

So to avoid suffering more, it is in the best interest of the user to explorer several different avenues to increase his/her internet speed.

After trying out each of the steps that we have mentioned below, users should run their speed tests in order to observe if a given tip has helped them attain faster internet connection.

If the user does not see any noticeable results after implementing a tip then the user should move on to the next tip.

Tip 1: Make Sure All Extra and Unused Internet-enabled Devices Are Off

 

In the majority of the cases, users don’t realize that their internet-connected devices actual do sip small amounts of their bandwidth all the time.

Now, if the user has only one or two of these then they don’t matter much.

But most modern users have multiple tablets, phones, smart TVs, smart home devices, computer and video game console in their home.

All of these have to share the same home network.

These devices eat up internet data and drop by drop it can increase to a reasonable amount.

As a result, the user has less bandwidth to work with at any given point in time.

Moreover, some users have this tendency to believe that their multiple devices aren’t hurting their internet connection when they are sitting idle.

But that is not the case.

If the user has powered on these devices then it is quite likely that they will use data even if the user is not actively utilizing these devices.

Most modern devices come with the feature of automatically download updates and then installing those updates as soon as the manufacturers or software developers roll these updates out.

Hence, these devices can reduce bandwidth with only their update processes.

And we’re not only talking about system updates.

Updates, nowadays, also mean all the updates that come with individual applications.

Most modern users are now running several number of these smart devices on their home network.

And sometimes they can draw a pretty significant amount of internet bandwidth if they are always on.

Readers should also note that most of these devices also have the default setting of installing firmware updates automatically.

Users who don’t pay attention to these things may find that they have multiple devices that are downloading updates on a regular basis.

In the process of doing so, they are simultaneously eating up bandwidth without the knowledge of the user.

We hope that by now readers would have run some speed tests before implementing any of our tips.

That is, under normal conditions.

wifi_router_in_your_home

Some users don’t pay proper attention to the placement of their WiFi routers.

So what do you do now?

Now, users need to spend a bit of time and go through all of their devices.

If they find that there is a device that they are not using any more then users should turn off the vast majority of these devices.

Remember, we’re only talking about internet-enabled devices here.

The minimum that users should do is to turn off the devices’ WiFi connection.

After that users should run their speed tests again and check if they can observe a slight uptick in their internet download speeds.

Our research shows that a user stream video content from three different devices (let’s say a laptop, smart tv, and a mobile device) and has a speed test result of 16 Mbps then it should not be hard to get a speed test result of 23 Mbps if the user turns off two of these video streaming devices (for example, smart TV and smartphone device).

Sometimes users can see improvement in internet speeds of up to 50 percent.

Users have to keep in mind though that the increase or decrease in their internet speeds would depend on the type of subscription package that they have.

For our research purposes, we paid attention to an internet connection from Comcast with a 100 Mbps connection.

Our research also shows that you are unlikely to get anywhere near that speed even a 2:00 pm in the afternoon on any given weekday.

Remember, these are off-peak hours that we are talking about here.

Nevertheless, if you shut down some or almost all of your devices that are always connected to the internet, that will help you free up some of that valuable bandwidth.

In fact, in some cases shutting down these Internet-enabled devices can even help users ameliorate buffering issues.

Router Hacks and Fixes

Our second tip is to find a more appropriate spot for your WiFi router.

How do wireless routers work?

Well, we can’t go into the details of that here but for now, you should know that these work by sending radio signal in the outward direction all over the place.

With that said, it is true that these are some very high-frequency signals.

And hence they have, relatively speaking, a short range.

Moreover, as is the case with any and all radio signals, these signal do slow down and sometimes are even blocked when they come across an object.

If the object is in their path, these signal will get blocked.

What does that do?

It degrades the actual quality of these radio signals.

For the end user, it means lower internet speeds.

So, one of the simplest ways in which you can boost your internet speed is by relocating your WiFi router.

Users who have already set up their working machine close to their WiFi router don’t need to do anything here.

But users who have their WiFi router in one corner of the house and their work machine in the other corner, should try to implement this tip in order to resolve speed issues related to their internet connection.

Remember, you need to reduce the distance between your router and your device.

Try to remove as many obstacles are possible as well.

Our research shows that if the user has placed his/her WiFi router right behind his/her TV, then he/she should expect some speed reduction.

Closing the door of one’s room while the WiFi router is someplace outside the room also affects speed.

And so does the sheer distance of the WiFi router from the user’s work machine.

Our research shows that if the user fixes these issues and brings his/her router to a more open location and opens the door to the room in order to get rid of the extra interference then he/she can gain some significant speed boosts.

We know that some users may find it impossible to move the router for one reason or another.

In that case, users should at least try to reduce the total number of obstacles.

Users should pay special attention to metal objects that may exist directly in the WiFi router signal’s path.

Reboot The Router

No matter what your problem is with electronics in general, rebooting them always helps.

Users should know this from their computer experience.

Whenever computer machines start to act slightly sluggish, what is the first piece of advice that users implement?

Yes.

They implement the advice of rebooting their device or machine.

After running an electronic device for a few days, it is bound to get slow.

And that’s where rebooting can make its biggest impact.

When a user reboots the computer, he/she is actually helping the computer machine to clear its cached memory.

Moreover, rebooting also gets rid of all the background processes that the user does not need anymore.

That is what makes the computer run faster than before.

Of course, the computer machine will build up a backlog again and you’ll have to repeat the process again.

Now, the thing about wireless routers is that they also act like small computer machines.

Modern WiFi routers have memory and they have background processes along with cached information.

Hence, we take the opinion of many others that rebooting a WiFi router always helps to clear any cached memory.

Rebooting will help the WiFi router to get things moving in the right direction again.

After a given reset, the router tries to reconnect to all the data channels again.

The often results in landing the user on a better and more efficient (not to mention less crowded) data channel.

Our research shows that if you run a speed test before rebooting your WiFi router and then run another one after you have rebooted your WiFi Router you can expect up to 15 percent increase in internet speed.

Some of our readers might say that isn’t that big of a difference.

And they would be right.

wifi_signals

Sometimes someone else’s WiFi signals are messing with your own internet connection.

But they have to remember, even though 15 percent is not a lot it isn’t small potatoes either.

So how do you go about resetting your WiFi router?

Well, there are many ways.

Many of them are simple.

In order to effectively reboot your WiFi router, you will have to do the following,

  • First, try to remove the WiFi router’s power cord completely
  • Then wait for about 20 seconds.
    At the max wait for 30 seconds.
  • Then turn your WiFi router back on.
  • After that wait some more till it starts to broadcast a connection

When you have done that, you should have no problems in identifying that your WiFi router has become, effectively, a bit faster with nothing but the help of a reboot.

Change The Channel of Your WiFi Router

Now, in the last tip, we mentioned something about WiFi routers having these channels.

Now we’ll go into a bit more details.

Actually, wireless routers have the ability to broadcast their data signals.

But they do so on a specific given wavelength.

Some call it, a channel.

There are many WiFi routers that have around 14 different channels available.

More expensive WiFi routers can support even more channels.

Most modern WiFi routers usually try to operate between 2400 to 2500 Megahertz radio bands.

Readers should also know that most of the time routers split the channels up into 14 different part while remaining between the band limit.

Now, since the router is splitting up the channel into 14 different parts, as you would imagine, there exists some good amount of overlap in almost all of the channels.

We say almost because some channels don’t have overlapping.

These channels are 1, 6 and 11.

Now, we don’t mean to say that these channels have absolutely no overlapping.

They do.

But it is far less in its intensity than other channels.

Users who are living in an urban and/or suburban community would find that they have a pretty good chance of picking up several WiFi signals with the help of their smartphone devices.

Even if those WiFi signals come from their neighbors.

Most modern routers have the ability to pick up any and all available channels automatically.

But that doesn’t mean they are picking up the ones that are most efficient and/or least-crowded channels.

Moreover, readers should also consider the fact that there is a high chance a lot of other WiFi routers would also send their own signals and hence would try to grab some share from the same channel.

Perhaps this is a good time to mention one inherent problem with this situation.

That problem relates to channels that we just talked about.

Let’s explain it with an example.

Assume one user has a WiFi router that is using channel 1.

And the user’s neighbor also happens to have a WiFi router and it is using channel 2.

Then, the chances of both users experiencing heavy interference go up exponentially.

Each and every channel that tries to move towards the 2500 MHz band will cause interference for all the other lower channels.

The other thing is, many modern day WiFi routers don’t allow users to manually modify the channel that they are broadcasting on.

If we are talking about the ideal world, then it goes without saying that everyone should use the same channel.

Or at least use different channels which do not interact with each other.

That would reduce a lot of interference problems.

Since we’re not living in the ideal world, you can’t have that.

But if some neighbors can come to an agreement and not use certain channels, then it is probably possible.

Let’s forget about neighbors for a while.

What can you do to help yourself to a faster internet connection?

Well, you can start off by shifting to other channels such as 1, 11 or 6.

You can do that by tweaking your WiFi router’s settings.

Some users prefer to set their WiFi router’s settings to use channel 7.

This is a great option for people who are living in a rural area or community.

Even while living in a rural community, there is still a chance that your WiFi router might pick up multiple WiFi signals.

But because of the fact that there aren’t enough neighbors around, there is no need for the user to change his router’s settings to use another channel.

This is exactly what my research shows as well.

If you live in an area where there aren’t a lot of people who are using a WiFi router then you don’t need to worry about changing your channel that much.

However, this only holds true for those users who live in close to ideal conditions where the chances of experiencing interference are very low.

Use DIY Tricks and Hacks to Increase The Range Of Your WiFi

Sometimes the biggest hurdle towards increasing your internet speed is distance.

Distance, from one’s wireless router to one’s work machine.

We’ve already talked about this before.

So this time, we’ll talk about the situation where you can’t move your WiFi router.

First of all, we would like to tell you that you still have options.

There is no need to despair, in other words.

One way of boosting your WiFi signals is to simply buy a faster WiFi router.

Outside of that, there are some DIY hacks that you can take advantage of.

The easiest option is to simply install the latest firmware on your device.

That may allow your device to actually output more power.

And WiFi routers have a lot of firmware options.

Some of those options include Tomato and DD-WRT.

These firmware options allow users to have more control over what their WiFi router can and cannot do.

Potentially, they can help users improve their internet speed.

DD-WRT actually provides very detailed guides on its official website for how to easily install its software application on one’s WiFi router.

To know more about that click here.

Before you actually go and read the guides, make sure you know the model and make of your WiFi router.

There are some other tricks and tips users can employ in order to increase their WiFi range.

We will cover more about that in another super guide.

There are also ways for individual users to actually come up with WiFi extenders.

We’ll cover that in a later part of this super guide.

Lookout For Unwanted Guests Who Are Using Your WiFi Signal

Sometimes it is important.

Other times, it is not so important.

But this tip is very essential for users who use unsecured Wifi connection most of the time.

In fact, for people who are using unsecured WiFi connection, we have this:

STOP.

Stop whatever you are doing right now and secure your WiFi connection right at this moment.

People who live in suburban or urban areas and don’t secure their WiFi connection with a strong password will find that their chances of having their neighbors use their network go up exponentially.

Of course, an unsecured WiFi network is open to anyone.

Not just your neighbors, but anyone else passing by could hop on the user’s unsecured WiFi connection.

After connecting to the network, anyone is free to use as much bandwidth as one likes.

We’re not saying there are evil people all around you.

But what we are saying is that unintentionally or intentionally, they may hop on your network and start using free WiFi.

Why would anyone UNINTENTIONALLY connect to a random WiFi network?

Well, the thing is, some internet-enabled devices automatically connect to unsecured Wifi networks if they find one.

So, it is always better to double check your network’s WiFi security.

Users have the option of browsing their WiFi router’s connection logs in order to determine if someone else is consuming their WiFi bandwidth.

Don’t know how to do that?

Well, in that case, you may need to actually go ahead and check your WiFi router’s instruction manual.

That manual will let you know the appropriate LAN IP address.

After you find the relevant LAN IP address you need to use that addresses to connect to your WiFi router via a web browser.

Most of the time, the default LAN IP address is 192.168.1.1.

Other times it is 192.168.0.1.

But someone might have changed your default LAN IP Address to something else.

We know users who even use LAN IP addresses as different as 10.10.10.254.

Once you have logged directly into your router’s web interface, you can easily access different areas in order to check which smartphone devices are connected to your WiFi network.

Every WiFi router would list out this information in a different manner.

They might use different labels as well.

Generally speaking though, you can find the complete log of all the connected devices to your WiFi network under the label Network.

Sometimes this label comes in the form of Wireless.

When you click the right tab, your router’s web interface should you the list of devices that are currently using your WiFi router.

Keep trying to find the right tab until you come across a page that has a section which lists,

  • MAC address
  • Hostname
  • IP address

of different devices under their respective labels.

Once you have come across such a page, know that you have clicked on the right tab.

Remember the name of the tab for future use as well.

Now, when you are viewing the right page, you need to make sure you pay sufficient attention to the Hostname label.

Why?

Because this is the label that’s going to tell you the name of all the devices that have connected to your WiFi network.

Most of the time, users can utilize the web browser interface to give devices that have connected to their WiFi network any name that they like.

But we recommend you save yourself some time and refrain from doing so.

Of course, if you suspect that some unauthorized device has connected to your device then it is best that you give devices some names in order to identify the ones that you don’t want on your network.

If you can see a list on your connections page, it should show a different name for each device.

Users should be able to recognize the names of all the devices.

That isn’t always possible because some have so many smartphone, tablets and other smart devices with generic names that they can’t separate the ones that they own from the ones that someone else owns.

Sometimes you may come across a situation where you have unnamed devices that have connected to your WiFi network.

This is also something that you need to address.

How do you address it?

You address it by checking to see if your WiFi router’s settings happen to have a Connected Users tab and/or section.

If, somehow, you find a device or even a user that you think should not have access to your WiFi network, then you can try to block that device.

Most modern WiFi routers give administrators that option.

But you will have to find that option from your settings menu.

So what should you do if your WiFi router does not give you an option in the settings menu for blocking unwanted devices?

Well, one simple solution is to just go ahead and change your current WiFi router password.

What will that do?

That will force any and all devices to reconnect to your WiFi network.

And when they do try to connect to your network, they will need the new password.

Some users may find that tedious because if they change the password then they will have to connect all of their internet-enabled devices to the network again.

The payoff can be huge if you find a freeloader who was eating up your network bandwidth.

Forget WiFi And Stick With Wired Connection

wired_connection

The days of wired connections are not over. If your wireless connection is dragging you down, ditch it for a wired connection

There are those times when you are just short of space.

And when that happens you have few choices at hand other than to have your devices and your WiFi router physically very close to each other.

Of course, we are assuming here that your modem is close to your WiFi router as well.

If that is the case, then perhaps it is best for you to consider a wired network.

Yes.

Users who want to get rid of all the problems that come with wireless networks, such as slow internet speeds, should go with a wired ethernet connection.

As mentioned before, that isn’t always possible.

But when there is a will, there is a way.

So find the will and we are sure that you will find the way as well.

There is no doubt about the fact that a wired connection will provide you with faster speeds when compared to the WiFi connection you had before.

Moreover, a LAN connection can also save you a lot of bandwidth that your other internet-enabled devices can utilize.

So how do you go about using a wire for your internet connection?

The simple way is to get an ethernet cord.

And then connect it directly to any available port on your WiFi/wireless router.

You can also do the same to your modem.

However, we must mention here that with this method you may or may not see tangible results.

Our research shows that some users do see remarkable improvements while others don’t.

It all depends on how bad your wireless connection situation was before you switched to a wired connection.

The other thing readers need to keep in mind is that a lot of times users just do not have access to an extra ethernet port on their cable modem.

That’s why it is also a good idea to connect directly to one’s modem instead of first connecting to the wireless router.

That way you can experience even better results.

Conclusion

There are many other tips that you can use to increase the speed of your internet connection.

We’ll talk more about this issue in our next post about how to increase the speed of your internet connection.

But the basics remain the same.

Either use a wired connection or check if you don’t know about some things that might be hindering your internet connection speeds.

These hidden things include,

  • Someone using your WiFi connection because you don’t have a password
  • Some of your devices are continuously eating up your bandwidth without your knowledge
  • You have too many devices connected to your WiFi network
  • Your router is too far away from your machine
  • There are too many obstacles between your work machine and the router

If you have any comments then make sure to use the comments section below to let us know.

 

Zohair

Zohair

Zohair is currently a content crafter at Security Gladiators and has been involved in the technology industry for more than a decade. He is an engineer by training and, naturally, likes to help people solve their tech related problems. When he is not writing, he can usually be found practicing his free-kicks in the ground beside his house.
Zohair

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How To Increase The Speed Of Your Internet Connection

by Zohair time to read: 22 min
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