You need a fast and reliable WiFi connection to be able to stream movies, share large files, and have video conferences. Just because your internet service provider (ISP) claims that your WiFi is fast, that doesn’t mean that it will reach the speeds that were advertised. If you want to see how fast your internet connection actually is, here’s how to test WiFi speed, and what is a good download and upload speed.
How to Test Your WiFi Speed
- Open a browser page on your computer, smartphone, or tablet. For the best results, you should only have one browser tab open. It is also important to close all of your other applications on the device and turn off any other devices that are using WiFi. This includes any smart TVs, smartphones, tablets, game consoles, and smart home devices.
- Visit hellotech.com/speed. This is a site where you can run a speed test on your computer, iPhone, or Android devices for free.
- Then click “Go” and wait for the test to finish. This test will show you the upload and download speed of your internet connection (more on this below).
- Repeat the test. In order to make sure your speed test is accurate, you want to repeat the test in different parts of your home at different times of the day. Your speeds might rise and fall, depending on interference from other nearby networks, congestion on your internet service provider’s network, and more.
What is Download Speed?
Download speed refers to how fast your computer can transfer files from the internet. The higher your download speed is, the faster you will be able to load web pages, download files, stream videos, and more.
Your WiFi speed will directly affect how fast you can download a file. For example, it would take around three minutes to download a 1GB file at 50Mbps (megabits per second), while it would only take a minute and a half to download the same file at 100Mbps.
What is a Good Download Speed?
If you want to be able to stream 4K videos on multiple devices, while playing online games and using Skype all at once, Google recommends you have a download speed of 50-100Mbps. In order to stream a movie in 4K, Netflix recommends that you have a download speed of at least 25Mbps. However, you only need 5-10Mbps to stream high-definition video, and 3Mbps to stream content in standard-definition.
It is important to note that the more devices you have, the higher your download speed needs to be to accommodate all of them at once. So, if you want to be able to watch an HD movie on Netflix while browsing the web on your smartphone, it is recommended that you have a download speed higher than 10Mbps. Otherwise, your web pages might load slower, or you might experience buffering issues.
If you plan on streaming content from 3-5 devices, you should have a download speed of 50-100Mbps. If you have more than 5 devices streaming content, you might need a connection of up to 200Mbps or more.
The average download speed for fixed WiFi connections in the US is 95Mbps, according to the most recent data from Ookla.
What is Upload Speed?
Upload speed refers to how fast you can transfer files from your computer over the internet or to another user. You will need a fast upload speed for live-streaming videos, sending large files over email, and video-chatting. Your upload speed will usually be much lower than your upload speed, but it doesn’t matter for streaming music or videos.
What is a Good Upload Speed?
To live stream HD video, YouTube recommends an upload speed of 3-6Mbps. However, if you want to live-stream 4K video at 60 frames per second, you would need an upload speed of 20-51Mbps. Twitch recommends an upload speed of 6Mbps, while Facebook only recommends an upload speed of 4Mbps.
The average upload speed for fixed WiFi connections was 33Mbps, according to the most recent data from Ookla.
Now that you know how to test your WiFi speed, check out our tips on how to boost your WiFi signal.