Before using any internet connection, it is advisable to do a speed test to determine the download, and upload speeds the connection can provide. Today we are going to give you a series of straightforward guidelines and some useful tips that will allow you to perform tests quickly and then connect to the Internet at the fastest possible speed. Also, we will tell you more about the parameters that measure in the tests, and we will see what they are for.
First of all, let’s be clear on how to test the internet speed. Go to Speedcheck to test your internet speed. Click on the blue button with white text “Start Test”. The internet speed test will begin with the latency test. Then the download and upload speeds are checked within a few seconds.
1. Basic concepts
When performing such a speed test, three characteristics are measured: The ping, the download speed, and the upload speed. The first, also called latency, is very useful, as it determines how fast one computer sends data to another and how long it takes to receive it. In other words: Imagine that your computer is a messenger. It sends a package to another medium, whatever it is, and once received, that second device emits a response. The period between sending the packet and receiving the reply from the recipient should be as low as possible. For example, 150 milliseconds is a very high figure that will cause a less responsive internet connection than the latency of only 20 or 30 milliseconds.
Ping or latency is especially important in those situations where the immediacy with which we communicate with a server is vital to the activity we are performing. A classic example is that of videogames because if your ping is high you will have lag and it will take a long time to get to your screen what is happening in an online game. And when the game is, for example, a shooter that can make the difference when reacting to certain situations.
When you have a videoconference, it can also be essential to have a good ping so that the conversation can flow. It’s quite uncomfortable to have one of these conversations with a high lag and have to wait for your message to reach the other person and then get back to you with their response.
And then there’s the world of vehicles and connected cities. Imagine you are driving a car remotely or driving any other system from home. In these cases, the ability to react is vital to avoid accidents, and that is why it is crucial to have latencies as low and close to real-time as possible.
Besides, when one of these devices makes use of artificial intelligence with algorithms that need to obtain data from the network, it is also vital to have a good latency so AI can make decisions as quickly as possible. Imagine that one of those cars that drive alone takes too long to stop at a risky situation because of its lag. It can have terrible consequences.
In short, the speed of your connection is the only thing you will need to know for example if you will be able to watch a movie on Netflix or download a file in a short time. But in the cases in which you are going to interact with other elements through the internet, the latency and the ping become two vital factors to measure the quality of the connection.
2. Download and Upload
The second and third concepts that we mentioned before are also decisive. With the download speed, we measure the frequencies (usually in megabits), at which you receive data from the Internet. The opposite is the upload speed which quantifies how fast you can send data to the internet.
Let’s be more transparent and make the language simple. The download speed is the data download speed, the time it takes for the information to reach us from the Internet. To understand it better: When you receive an e-mail with an attachment, how long does it take to download it to your computer? The time will depend on your download speed.
We hear mostly about download speed, and until now it was the only speed that much value was put on. The upload speed is the speed of sending the information to the Internet by the computer. For example, when you send an e-mail, update your website, make backup copies or post your photos or videos on your preferred social network, the speed at which you do it depends only on your upload speed.
3. How should we do a good speed test?
As we said at the beginning, there are a series of factors that can influence the connection to the Internet. You can follow the tips explained below:
It is advisable to carry out periodic tests, not just one but multiple over a long period of time.
There are times of increased activity in which networks must support more traffic. Holidays or nights are the times when our speed may suffer the most. It is advisable to carry out random tests in different time slots to find out in which periods we can make the most of the network.
Third and no less important:
We must carry out the speed test near the router, and if possible, use an ethernet cable when running the speed test.
If we run the test, we must ensure that there is only one device connected, which will be the one you use to measure the speed because if we connect multiple devices at the same time, the bandwidth is distributed and therefore the internet speed in each device decreases.