I’ve seen internet speed overlooked and forgotten often. If you’re in control of your internet connection here’s some tips to ensure you’re working with as fast of a connection as possible. If you’re in an office with an IT guy that handles this stuff, get back to work.
Pick the right provider for your area:
I went to my father-in-laws house and was baffled by the slowness of his DSL internet connection. “It’s high-speed and costs $60/month.” he said. I did a speed check on his connection and he was at a blazing 1.2 mbps. I figured I’d do him a favor and call his provider so they could address the obvious problem. Apparently there was no problem. High-speed internet in his area through his DSL is 1.2mbps. Yuck.
He’s got an iPhone that runs on a Verizon plan. For much less per month he’s way better off using an LTE connection through a wireless router (12mbps). That’s 10X faster and 1/3 of the price. Still not the fastest connection but it’s the best he can do in his rural area.
Check Your Connection Often.
In my home office I’ve got a 100 mbps service. Working at full potential it’s sweet. Throughout the years I’ve noticed occasionally it slows down. Sometimes down to 15mbps. Here’s a few links to check your speed and my go-to checklist for troubleshooting a slow cable internet connection. If you’ve got DSL, don’t try my tips.
Sites that offer free DSL and cable internet speed testing:
(Most of these are offered by specific providers. Each can check the speed of any providers connection.)
Tips for speeding up your cable internet connection:
Here’s the dance I’ve been doing for the past decade. Start at the top and try to stay calm:)
- Check what your speed should be, check it using the links above. If all is well, get back to work.
- Unplug your modem, unscrew the Coaxiale cable, unplug your router, wait a long minute, and plug them back in. This refreshes your connection.
- Call your provider. They’ll insist you do the step above and then they’ll press a magic button on their end to reset your connection.
- If neither of the above work ask your provider if you have the newest hardware. Internet providers are always upgrading their modems and typically they won’t come and replace it unless you ask. I have mine replaced about every 8 months.
- If you’ve got the newest modem from your internet provider check on the quality of your router by plugging your computer directly into your modem. Check your speed and if it’s faster the slowness starts at your router
- Make sure other devices aren’t unnecessarily eating up the connection (Apple TV, cellphones with apps open, iPad, etc…)
- Still slow? You may have a weak connection within your home. As your connection splits to your TV, through walls, and to your computer the signal can decrease. If you’ve got cable try plugging your modem directly into where the connection starts in your home.
- Sadly I’ve gotten this far down the list a time or two. I’ve had to have the cables to my home replaced, sometimes a cable guy fixes something on a pole, sometimes it’s an outage that slows everything down.
As remedial as it is your connection speed plays a pretty big role in using the internet. If you’ve got additional tip or recommendation feel free to leave a comment.