Have you ever been 3 hours deep into binge-watching your favorite show and suddenly your screen freezes because your internet speed slows down to a crawl in the middle of the season finale? Death come for me now, right? Why does this happen?

How internet speed works

Internet speed is measured by Mbps (megabits per second) which measures the amount of data your internet connection transfers per second. The maximum amount of data that can be transferred at any given time is known as bandwidth. This can sometimes be confused with the actual data transfer speed. For example, even though you may have 100Mbps bandwidth, you may be transferring data at only 25 Mbps due to any number of factors (the most common being other users/devices using the same bandwidth or poor internet connection).

Data travels in two directions; upload and download. Each of these are used for different internet-based activities. The average user often needs more download speed than upload speed. This is one of the reasons Reliance Connects offers packages with large downloads and smaller uploads.

Download speed refers to activities that involve accessing information on the internet (i.e. streaming videos or shows online, shopping online, reading online articles, streaming music, etc…). In this way, information is being sent to you.

Upload speed is used in activities that involve you sending any type of information from your device to another device or onto the internet (i.e. uploading a video to Facebook, playing games online, video chatting, sending an email with attachments, etc…).

Think of internet use as a highway. Traffic (information) is moving in both directions. The number of lanes can be likened to bandwidth. The more lanes there are the more traffic can flow through at any given time. Imagine you are on a two-lane highway. When you are the only one out there, you are free and clear to drive long and fast without slowing down. Then all of a sudden, a semi shows up! That 16-wheeler is your teenager watching hours and hours of YouTube videos. That’s fine, right? After all, there is another lane. Suddenly a minivan shows up. That’s mom looking up new recipes for dinner this weekend. Now you’re forced to share the road with everyone else. Unfortunately, this means your car has to slow down to pace with all the traffic on the highway.

Internet speed/usage works very much in the same way. Although one internet speed package maybe enough for you, when it comes to dividing it up amongst family and friends and whatever other devices you have connected to your WiFi, it can take up quite a bit of room.  That’s one of the reasons Reliance Connects is working to build and offer more fiber in the areas we serve.

Why do I need Fiber?

Fiber optics from Reliance Connects is the modern-day equivalent to a super-highway. All the lanes are open, speed limit is set to 80mph and absolutely no construction in sight! Switching to Fiber is the best connection available today. Fiber in your home or business ensures you don’t run into that big rig or that minivan while cruising down the Internet super-highway. You can learn more about fiber optics here and find out if it’s available where you are.