How much internet speed is enough for me?

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What is the required Internet speed for my home? In other words, what is the appropriate transfer rate for you? Like with electricity, hiring an Internet package with a higher rate than necessary results in a more expensive bill. So, here we will provide you with the keys to help you decide.

Next, we will analyze some factors to consider when determining how much Internet speed you need at home. Keep reading to discover what rate best suits your needs, depending on the activities you perform with your devices.

Key concepts

It is not easy to answer the question of how much Internet speed you need at home, as the correct answer largely depends on how you use the network. Due to this, we will explain some essential concepts and then analyze typical situations to determine which is the best option for you.

Connection Types

Currently, there are different technologies to provide Internet connection in our country. These are:

  • Fiber optic. This is the fastest technology currently available. Its main characteristic is that the cable directly connects your home to the central. It is available in the most populated areas and reaches speeds of up to 1 Gbps.
  • Cable. This is a combination of coaxial cable and fiber optic that provides good transfer rates, but not as fast as FTTH.
  • ADSL. There are still some ADSL rates in the market, although this technology is gradually disappearing. It uses the same infrastructure as a conventional telephone and reaches modest speeds of up to 20 Mbps.
  • 4G and 5G connection. The fifth generation of mobile Internet connections promises speeds of up to 1 Gbps. However, there are still regions that use 4G, which reaches speeds of up to 100 Mbps.

Available Speeds

Focusing on the dominant technology, fiber optics, let’s examine the different speeds offered by providers in different parts of the United States. It is common to find speeds corresponding to the following figures:

  • 100 Mbps. It is a common and affordable speed that is more than adequate for many users who perform basic tasks at home.
  • 300 Mbps. If you want a faster connection, a 300 Mbps option is generous and generally affordable. With this speed, you will have more than enough for most of your needs.
  • 600 Mbps. You can also find a 500 Mbps speed, but 600 Mbps is more common. In general, this is a good option for advanced users or for spaces where many people will be connected.
  • 1 Gbps. It is the maximum speed you will find in the provider market at the moment. Many times, having this speed is not necessary and will only increase your internet bill. This is an ultra-high-speed connection that is only recommended in very special cases.

Other factors to consider

There are at least two important points that you should keep in mind when contracting an internet connection at home, besides speed:

  • Symmetry. It refers to connections that offer the same upload (sending data) and download (receiving data) speeds.
  • Latency. It is crucial if you plan to play online or use cloud platforms. It refers to the response of the server and the time delay in processing requests.

How much Internet speed do you need depending on your activities

To know how much internet connection you need, you need to answer two questions:

  • How many users will connect at the same time?
  • What tasks will each user perform?

Internet browsing

This is the activity that consumes the least network resources. Even when there are several users accessing websites on their devices, a speed of 100 Mbps is more than enough. We can also include other more specific activities, such as editing documents in the browser.

Streaming content viewing

An additional variable is added in this section, the resolution and quality of the content. It’s not the same to watch videos in 4K as in Full HD. These are the recommended speeds for each quality:

  • 4K – 20 Mbps
  • HD 1080p – 5 Mbps
  • HD 720p – 2.5 Mbps
  • SD 480p – 1.1 Mbps
  • SD 360p – 0.7 Mbps

If you are the only one who will watch 4K content, a 100 Mbps connection is enough. However, if other users are also watching videos, playing, making video calls or browsing the Internet, it is better to opt for 300 Mbps for a good experience.

Online gaming

The number of users connected to the network affects the speed required to play online. 300 Mbps is usually sufficient, but if others are watching 4K videos at the same time, it may be necessary to consider 600 Mbps. It is also important to take latency into account.

How to know the current speed of your connection?

We end this guide with an important question, how can you know the current speed of your Internet connection?

The most recommended is to perform a speed test. Access the mentioned link and click on the corresponding button to start the test. Keep in mind that the results can be affected by various factors, such as the intensity of the WiFi signal or the state of your router. However, this test will allow you to have an approximation of the tasks that your Internet connection can handle.

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