Technology Tips: Simple Steps to Improve Your Internet Speed
Slow internet is one of the most frustrating things of our time. When Netflix is buffering continuously or when the email takes too long to load, you are never in a good mood. However, there are tons of free, simple steps to improve your internet speed. Since not all of us are networking specialists, it is very easy to get drowned in a plethora of genuine and fake information.
Major Factors Affecting Internet Speed
Before we dive deep into the simple steps to improve your internet speed, it is important to understand what factors affect it. Some of the major factors are:
When you go down to the primitive level, the Internet is all about sending and receiving data from all over the world. On the basic level, it refers to the transmission of electrical signals, both in wires and in space. Therefore, it is obvious that the ability to transmit signals depends on networking hardware. If you have a high-end router, you make the most of your ISP-allowed bandwidth. In contrast, an old router can slow things down and cannot promise all of what your ISP provides. Furthermore, your own computer should also be fast enough to process incoming and outgoing data.
Besides, if you are using wireless internet or WiFi, you should keep track of more things. Your speed may vary according to the location of your router. Likewise, the number of connected users also affects the internet speed on your device.
Number of Activities
It is obvious that the number of activities on the network affects your Internet speed. If there are several users streaming high-definition videos, you will experience a slow connection. The same is true, while multiple users are online gaming or videoconferencing.
Interference and Obstacles
The modern Internet, most commonly the WiFi, works on the principles of wireless communication. Since electromagnetic waves are being transmitted, they can experience interference and obstacles. Concrete walls, doors, and floors can affect the transmission of such waves. Likewise, the presence of electrical appliances like microwaves also affects signal strength.
While you may not notice them, several apps are running in the background and connecting to the Internet at the same time. If you install more resource-intensive applications, you may experience a slow Internet speed. Furthermore, since you use the Internet through a web browser, the quality of the browser is also a major factor. Moreover, look out for the add-ons and toolbars that you keep inside your browser. Since they also grab a part of your bandwidth, use them only when necessary.
Viruses and Malware
Viruses and malware are harmful programs that not only affect your Internet speed but the computer’s overall health. Since they can massively drain your computer’s resources, you must employ robust prevention measures. Installing an antivirus program is a good practice for a start.
Ways To Improve Your Internet Speed
Now that we have understood the major influencing factors, we can move on to understanding the simple measures to improve your internet speed. The following are the simple steps to improve your internet speed.
Resetting your router is one of the simplest steps to improve your internet speed. It is also a technique that gets thrown around quite a bit. However, this technique is effective because it resets router memory and establishes a fresh connection with the ISP. Likewise, it will carry out all the necessary updates that are pending. While resetting your router, it is important that you do not do a factory reset. This is because a factory reset will erase all the important settings set up during the initial connection. You can simply disconnect the device from the power source and reconnect it after a while.
Allocating multiple channels is quite a popular technique to improve your Internet speed. If you have a modern router that supports 2.5 GHz and 5 GHz channels, you can manage them appropriately for optimized performance. For devices in a shorter distance from the router, you can use the 5Ghz channel whereas for those in longer ranges, use the 2.5 GHz channel. This will decrease the load on the single-channel and make the best use of available resources. Furthermore, some routers come with an automatic allocation feature that can provide an optimum channel according to the device’s needs. If this feature is not available, you can manually configure it through the router settings.
Device and Activity Management
According to their activity, managing connected devices can be a great way to improve your internet speed. Resource-intensive activities like gaming and video streaming require larger bandwidth compared to simple browsing. Use the following tips to better manage connected devices within your network.
Sometimes, there might be unidentified devices that might have entered through an unauthorized breach. Remove all those sorts of devices. If you have a weak password, replace it with a strong one. In case of a continuous breach, you have the option to ban the MAC address.
Allocate larger bandwidth for devices used for gaming, streaming, and video conferencing. For devices that carry out simple browsing tasks, lower bandwidth is fine.
Restricting usage for children is also an effective method to save up on some bandwidth.
Repositioning your router also helps improve your internet speed, particularly for wireless connections. Since most of the Internet being used nowadays is WiFi, the distance between the router and the device is an important factor. Similarly, since the data is being transmitted as electromagnetic waves, it is subject to interference and obstacles. Proper positioning of your router can be an effective way to provide fast transmission throughout your house. As a rule of thumb, you can put your router in the middle of the room in which you work or stay most of the time.
Use Ethernet When Possible
We know that Ethernet is quite uncomfortable when you are using portable computers like laptops. However, whenever possible, using Ethernet can be a great technique to obtain a rapid transmission rate. Since devices like desktop computers, televisions, and gaming consoles typically stay at the same place, connecting them to Ethernet is feasible. If you do not want long wires throughout your house, keep these types of devices close to the router.
Digital ads are some of the most frustrating parts of the online space. This includes unnecessary pop-ups, images, and auto-playing videos. However, since they are moneymakers for website owners, we can’t really do much about it. Likewise, these ads bring irritation to the viewers and eat up a significant amount of your available bandwidth. Most of the modern browsers employ ad-blocking plugins that prevent them from loading with the website.
Manage Your Software Ecosystem
We have already discussed that several apps running in the background simultaneously connect with the Internet. It is not a good idea to install tons of unnecessary apps and plugins on your computer. This can slow down both the Internet and computer speed. Modern operating systems like Windows have tools that can help you assess your network usage. Likewise, you can inspect what applications are grabbing a huge chunk of the available bandwidth. If they are unnecessary, you can turn them off.
Virus and Malware Protection
Viruses and malware carry out unauthorized activities on your computer and sometimes cause fatal damage. Likewise, they can seriously degrade the internet speed with their destructive programs. Therefore, using antivirus and antimalware software is a good practice for all types of users. Furthermore, maintain frequent scanning for viruses and malware and install all the necessary security updates.
Opt For a Better Speed
If you are still experiencing slow Internet speed after all these measures, opt for a better speed with your ISP. There are a number of plans and offerings designed by multiple ISPs. Look out for other users and ask them about their experience. If you think a slower internet is slowing you down, it might be a worthy investment.
In this blog, we have learned about the major steps to improve your internet speed. Likewise, we also talked about the major factors affecting your internet speed. There are several free tools that you can use to test your connection speed. Some of the most commonly used ones are Speedtest.Net, SpeedSmart Speed Test, Xfinity Speed Test, and Internet Health Test.
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