Would you like to know whether your connection is as fast as pay for?
With this current pandemic going on, more people are working from home online than ever.
A slow internet connection can be really disastrous for your work. If you feel like your data speed is slower than usual or maybe your ISP isn’t delivering the speed as promised on their sales, you can always do a quick personal internet speed test.
There are many free tools online to clock your own personal data speed and some more accurately than others, depending on why you’re speed testing. No software download is needed for the test, your web browser will do.
Before you perform any speed test, there are a few Prerequisites you need to check off-
- Make sure you are not connected to a VPN for the duration of the test.
- Any Downloads, updates, any sort of data consumption needs to be paused for the moment.
This will allow the speed test to be more accurate as the internet traffic is coming only from the test you’re performing.
What is a Speed Test?
In the most simplest terms, Speed Test means checking how fast your internet connection is at the moment.
It gives users the accurate internet connection speed that the provider is giving.
Depending on your plan, throttling rules, local congestion, it is often limited to a certain upload and download speeds.
Your ISP (internet service provider) controls your internet speed, and they usually state your connection speed “up to X Mbps.” So, for instance, if your plan promised you “50 Mbps,” and if your speed around 48 Mbps, they are being ethical.
But somehow, if you get around 20 Mbps from the promised 40 Mbps, it is recommended to call your ISP and report about it.
How Does Speed Test Work?
When you start a speed test, the client will determine the test server nearest to your location and sends a ping to the server and it responds.
Upon receiving the response, it establishes multiple connections and the client requests an initial chunk of data to the server to measure download speed.
- How long does it take to grab the data?
- How much of your network resources is it used?
The client will calculate the speed of the transfers and adjusts the chunk size. As the chunks are received by the client, it opens more connections to the server and requests more chunks throughout the duration of the test to accurately measure the download speed.
Related read: 27 Cool & Fun Google Tricks and Easter Eggs
The same goes for determining your upload speed, it establishes multiple connections and attempts to send a small piece of data to the server to measure upload speed.
It calculates speed of the transfers in real-time and as the data are received by the server, the client will send more data throughout the duration of the test until the configured amount of time has been reached.
Check out Speedtest.net’s explanation for a more detailed technical information.
Benefits of Speed Test
- Get your internet speed info.
- To check if you are getting the Mbps or Gbps level bandwidth that you’re paying your ISP for and comes with the plan.
- Note the errors and if necessary, you can use it to report to your provider what you’ve found.
- Check the internet connection speed between your device and even among other services such as Netflix, Hulu, HBO, etc.
How to Test Your Internet Speed
These tools are pretty self-explanatory and easy to use. Since most of the tools listed below have shareable option, you can brag your friends about how fast your internet speed is.
SpeedOf.Me is designed to replicate real-user browsing and downloading conditions in real-time. Unlike other bandwidth tests that use Flash and Java for their testing, SpeedOf.Me tests bandwidth directly from the browser via HTML5.
It works with desktop, mobile, tablet, game console, smart TV, car, etc. Other info it provides apart from your download and upload speed includes latency, your IP address, server location, etc.
Ookla Sppedtest or Speedtest.net check your standard ping and both your upload and download speed.
It determines your current location and pairs you to a local Speedtest server and measures the time it takes for the data to transfer between your computer and a remote server by way of your local ISP connection.
It also provides your ISP identity, internal and external IP, testing location, jitter, packet loss, latitude, and longitude of the test origin site.
Ookla is available on both smartphones (iOS, Android) and Desktop (Windows, Mac).
Fast.com is owned by Netflix and simple to use. When i say, simple, i mean really simple to use. Just head to the website and it will automatically measure your download speed.
Click on the Show More info to check your Latency, Upload speed, Server location, IP address, ISP name and more.
Fast.com was built for the sole purpose of checking if your ISP is throttling Netflix traffic.
So, i would recommend Speedtest.net for a more evenly internet speed test and not prioritizing more only on Netflix Servers.
TestMy.net has been around for a while now and it has been providing internet speed test for over 20 years.
The website is quite simple to use and easy to navigate around. You can either test individually for download and upload speed or click on combined to see them both on one page.
Instead of Flash or Java, it use HTML5 to run its tests. TestMy.net has multiple servers to choose from – North America, Europe, Asia amd Australia.
The speed Results can be saved for future use as well.
Google Fiber Speed Test
Google’s Fiber speed test is offered as part of its Fiber services and it takes less than half as long to run as many competing tests locking in around 10 to 15 seconds for the full test.
The test is highly reliable especially in the Desktop version and loads quickly with a clean interface.
It provides your upload and download speed, it’s pings, Latency, Server.
Understanding Your Speed Test Results
Below are the main test factors to look at:
Download/ Upload Bandwidth
In simple terms, download speed is how fast you can download data from the server to you and vice-versa for upload speed. Upload speed refers to how fast you can send data from your device to others.
Since most of the internet users spend more downloading than they do uploading, providers usually prioritize more to downloading and thus, download bandwidth is typically much higher than upload speed.
So, if your Speed test results say 29/6 Mbps
What does it mean? Well, it means that your speed connection has a download speed of 29 Mbps and an upload speed of 6 Mbps.
Latency (Ping Rate)
Ping rate is a measure of response time after you’ve sent out a request or the time it takes for your device to connect to an online server.
The faster the response, the lower the Ping rate which means more responsive connection. This is essentially important to live streaming or gaming where timing is everything.
Don’t forget to turn off your VPN or disconnect from any devices connected to more accurate results.