How Much Internet Speed Do I Need?
Are you trying to figure out what internet speed you need for your connected household? Now that you’re here, you won’t have to look any further. Internet is more accessible now than ever before and at speeds that were only dreamed of! This is probably a good thing since it seems like all the tech devices in our home need Wi-Fi to function.
Internet speed is represented in two forms, upload and download speeds. Each of these are needed for different everyday activities. Download speed is needed when bringing any information from the internet to your computer. This includes streaming movies/tv shows, downloading music and browsing social media. Upload speed is used when sending information from your computer to the internet. For example, video conferencing or uploading files to a cloud-based storage.
It used to be that a simple 25Mbps download and upload speed package was more than enough for the average household’s needs. And it was… at least before every man, woman, child got a smart phone. Parks Associates reported in 2019 an average of eight connected devices per person in the United States (Cisco VNI, 2018). Seems kind of high, right? Well when you stop and think about it, a connected device can include your desktop, laptop, smart phone, smart tv, tablet, smart watch, home assistant, video game consoles, smart home gadgets and well, you get the idea.
Each of these devices uses up a certain amount of bandwidth. Bandwidth is the maximum possible rate of data transfer. For example, with that 25 Mbps package, your bandwidth is 25Mpbs. Each connected device will use a portion of the total. You can expect to use a minimum of 5Mbps or more to stream a movie online (depending on the quality of the video) or at least 3 Mbps playing a video game online (more if more than one player). If these activities are happening at the same time, you can see your total available speed dwindling away. And remember, this doesn’t include the bandwidth being used by any mobile devices, computers or Wi-Fi enabled gadgets in your home.
It may help to picture a highway where each vehicle on the road represents a connected device. Although the speed limit allows people to travel at a comfortable 75 mph, if there is congestion caused by having several vehicles on the road with you, the speed you can travel freely begins to drop. Too many vehicles on a two-lane highway at the right time of day and sure enough you are at a stand-still.
With many Wi-Fi-enabled devices emerging and becoming mainstream over the last decade, all of a sudden 25Mbps is no longer enough. Especially when you consider how many phones, laptops, watches, etc. are in your average home. Other devices becoming much more common are smart-home gadgets such as thermostats, doorbells, security systems and health equipment.
Seems like everything wants to go for a spin on the internet highway. Luckily, Reliance Connects has anticipated and kept up with higher demands. If the above sounds like your home, you may want to consider getting set up with one of our higher speed packages reaching up to gig speeds in select areas. Gig speed is the ultimate super-highway with more than enough room for all those devices.
If you are interested in learning more. Give our office a call or drop by anytime! As always, we appreciate each of our customers and are proud to be your premier internet service provider.