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Is your internet speed slow or fast? Here’s how to tell now


It only takes a few seconds to check how fast – or slow – your internet is.

Chris Monroe / CNET

Next time your home internet connection struggles to load a webpage or Netflix keeps buffering while you’re working on that new series everyone’s talking about, take a few minutes to fix what’s going on is. A good place to start is to check the speed of your Internet connection.

Enlarge one connection problems From your ISP, the fact that many of us work remotely and possibly children learn at home remotely as well, are two activities that can strain your Internet connection.

The solution can be as simple as restarting your modem and router or upgrade to a mesh network. Below, we’ll show you how to check the speed of your Internet connection and give you some advice when it’s time to troubleshoot.

Run a speed test on your computer or phone

There are numerous apps and websites that test the speed of your connection. Some of the more popular speed test services are Speedtest.net or Fast.com.

Whether you’re installing an app or using a website, it’s a good idea to run the test a few times to get an idea of ​​the performance of your connection. Each test takes less than a minute and provides download and upload speed results.

FCC Broadband Internet Guidelines

According to the FCC, this is the speed of a connection you need based on your usage.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

The FCC has published a guideline for broadband speeds in households based on the number of devices and people connected to the same network. The basic service ranges from 3 Mbps to 8 Mbps and is good enough for light use (browsing, emailing, video calling, streaming HD video, etc.). Medium service is rated at 12 to 25 Mbps and is best for up to three users or devices running simultaneously with medium to high usage depending on the activity. Finally, advanced service is any connection speed over 25Mbps and is best suited for those with more than four users or devices using the connection at the same time for more than light usage.

The speed of your internet connection will depend on the time of day, the number of connected and used devices, along with other factors. I suggest running multiple speed tests over the course of a day or two, tracking the results, to measure the actual speed of your connections.

(For the tech-savvy, you can use a Raspberry Pi to run speed tests on a set schedule and upload the results to Google Drive for tracking by following this handy guide.)

Ideally, you connect your computer directly to your ISP’s modem with an ethernet cable to run a speed test, but that’s not always possible. But there is another option to run a speed test: use your wireless router’s app.

Speed ​​test results

A speed test is a quick and easy way to see if something is wrong.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

Run a speed test on your wireless router

Depending on the wireless router you are using, it may be possible to run a speed test via the app. For example, Google’s Nest Wi-Fi offers the option to run a speed test in the app or by asking Google Assistant how fast your internet connection is.

Eero, Linksys Velop and Asus ZenWifi also include the same capability.

Using your wireless router’s speed test may prove to be more accurate, in theory at least, because the router is connected directly to your modem.

You don’t have to rush to buy a new router if the speed test results are lower than you expect or what you’re paying for. However, that may be the case depending on how old it is. Router technology, like any other technology, changes frequently and can lead to performance issues. If your router was bought in the past few years, chances are it is fine and the problem is due to something else.


There are many reasons why your internet is slow.


What to do if your speed is slower than what you’re paying for

The first thing I recommend is to turn off your modem and wireless router, leave them off for about 30 seconds, then turn them back on. Usually this will fix any speed issues for me. We have a few more tips you can try to get your network working properly again.

The answer is not as simple as calling your service provider and informing them about the substandard service. It’s a frustrating fact, however ISPs are allowed to slow down your connection speed. However, there are steps you can take to determine if that’s the case or if there’s another problem by following this guide.

You can also check your carrier’s app or website for an outage. The first thing I do when my Comcast connection is malfunctioning is to open the Xfinity My Account app and look for any service issues. If there is one, the app will give you an estimated recovery time. Knowing that the problem is nothing on your end means you can forgo troubleshooting.

Finally, you can call your provider to make sure your modem supports the speed of your plan, or to see if there are any plans or promotions worth upgrading so you can get the speeds you need to get a Have a stress-free day. work and play.

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