Not a guide about the cataclysmic collapse of web data exchange rates.
Everyone wants a web-surf instead of a web-slog, but you may not necessarily need the fastest and most expensive package going, depending on your type of web usage. Equally, the most ideal option for you could well be a top-end package. This guide aims to tell you a little more about broadband speed, and might prove useful in helping you to choose the ideal broadband package.
The download speed for broadband is usually given in Mbps (Megabits per second), sometimes erroneously abbreviated to Mb. Downloading applies to any data that you retrieve on the web, whether it’s watching a YouTube video, streaming a film online or just accessing articles. Downloading is the process of transferring data from one place, and sending it to your location, and your own personal requirements should determine the actual download speed that you need.
The fact is that not everyone necessarily needs 200Mbps, or even 70Mbps. A cheaper deal with a more modest speed could well be suitable - you can still take an up to 30Mbps fibre package and enjoy quick, consistent broadband for an affordable price.
A lot depends on the amount of downloading that you plan to do; if you like to view the odd Wikipedia page before checking the sports news, then you really don’t need the fastest broadband available. However, if you are going to be constantly streaming music and downloading films then you will want to look for something fast, unless you have bags of patience!
Download speed is commonly advertised as the broadband speed, but there is also upload speed to consider as well. Upload speed is simply the reverse; you take information from your computer and send it to another location. As an example, this would be important for social networking; you may want to put photos on Facebook, or post an embarrassing video of one of your friends, and the pace will depend on your upload speed.
Broadband providers are required to advertise average broadband speeds, because maintaining the maximum speed possible cannot be guaranteed. You can currently purchase a wide range of broadband packages, covering various average speeds download speeds.
Providers are advertising ever-increasing download speeds, with the potential for 200Mbps now available.
If you already have broadband and are unsure about your current broadband package or broadband speed then you can do a broadband speed test. We have designed a fast, effective and accurate broadband speed test for our users.
Find out your current speed with the Broadband Finder Speed Test. Please make sure that you have closed ALL other applications in order to achieve the most accurate results.
There are various factors to consider when looking to improve actual broadband speed, and it depends on the lengths you are willing to go to in order to achieve these improvements. Broadband is significantly slower in rural areas, so relocating could give you a faster connection.
This might seem drastic, but if you need quicker broadband for work reasons then it could be worthwhile. If you are thinking of moving anyway, and web speed is important, then check the local speeds and broadband types available in prospective locations.
Broadband through glass fibre is very quick, and if fibre is available to you and you are currently using ADSL then it might be worth looking at a switch or upgrade. Fibre-optic broadband is significantly quicker than ADSL.
You may also find that being nearer your wireless router or changing your router channel (if possible) has an effect. Another useful tip is to close down programs which drain the bandwidth, or do your browsing, downloading and streaming off-peak when traffic is less heavy.
Find out whether you could be getting faster home broadband speeds. Our speed test will check your current broadband and let you compare with other speeds in your area.Test your broadband
Our handy broadband contract renewal reminder service will let you know when your contract is coming to an end, so you can look for the best new deals.Set your reminder
Answer a few quick questions and our broadband usage calculator will give you a data estimate for your household. Using this we’ll recommend the best kind of deal for you.Calculate