Is your internet speed slower than it should be?
Are you experiencing high latency, lag spikes, or sudden disconnects from the internet?
Chances are, the issue is with your bandwidth.
In this article, we’ll teach you 10 tips to increase your bandwidth, and in turn, fix your internet speed.
But first, let’s start with the basics.
Bandwidth is the maximum amount of data that can be sent or received from your device within a given time period.
Bandwidth is measured in megabytes per second (Mbps), and is mainly dependent on your internet plan. If you’re paying for 10 Mbps, for example, that’s your cap, and you won’t be able to go any faster than that.
However, it doesn’t mean your internet will consistently work at 10 Mbps, as internet speed also depends on several other factors, such as the websites you visit.
Now that we’ve got that covered, let’s talk about your bandwidth and internet speed.
Is Your Bandwidth Impacting Your Internet Speed?
The fact that your internet is slow doesn’t necessarily mean your bandwidth is to blame. There can be numerous other factors at play.
Luckily, there’s a very simple way to test this.
Head over to Speedtest.net and see how fast your internet is. When running your speed test, make sure that you’re not downloading anything to ensure the results you receive are accurate.
Then, compare the speed to your internet plan. Are you getting exactly what you’re paying for?
If you find your internet speed to be too slow, but your bandwidth matches the plan you’re paying for, it may be time to upgrade your plan.
On the other hand, if your internet plan allows for, say, 50 Mbps, but your internet speed is only 20 Mbps, then it means something is wrong. Fortunately, there are some simple fixes that can help increase your bandwidth.
How to Increase Your Bandwidth – 10 Tips
#1. Restart Your Router
Sometimes a simple fix like restarting your router can do miracles.
After all, your router is a machine. It can easily be overworked.
#2. Change Your Router’s Location
The physical location of your router has an impact on the speed of your internet.
If the router is far away from your internet-connected devices, its signal might not be reaching them. If there are walls, multiple floors, or heavy doors between your devices and the router, these barriers might also impact your bandwidth.
So, move your router as close to your devices as possible, and see if it fixes the problem.
#3. Use a VPN
Since net neutrality was repealed, internet service providers (ISPs) have the right to throttle your internet speed for specific websites.
So for example, if your ISP has an exclusivity deal with a content website, they might throttle bandwidth for connections to their competition.
This means your bandwidth could decrease significantly when using specific websites versus others.
Luckily, though, there’s a very easy way to sidestep this form of bandwidth throttling: all you have to do is use a VPN.
VPNs encrypt your outgoing data, meaning an ISP can’t tell which websites you’re visiting. And since they won’t know what you’re doing, they won’t know when to throttle your bandwidth.
And as the icing on the cake, a VPN also comes with several other benefits:
- VPNs protect you from hackers and cybercriminals.
- VPNs hide your IP address and help prevent online behavior tracking.
- And most importantly, VPNs can help improve your online anonymity and privacy.
Sounds awesome, right? Here’s how to get started with a VPN:
#4. Update Your Router’s Firmware
Every router comes with software to help it function.
As with any type of software, regular updates help ensure it functions at optimal levels.
So, check if your router has any updates lined up and install them.
#5. Get a Better Router
If you’re using a router provided by your ISP, it may be outdated or inefficient.
Some older routers can’t handle multiple devices connected simultaneously. And yes, your mobile devices count, too.
While high-quality routers aren’t cheap, they may be worth the money if you spend a lot of time online.
#6. Get a Wi-Fi Repeater
If your router is far away from your devices (and you can’t relocate it), an alternative is to get a Wi-Fi repeater.
It works by putting the repeater in between your device’s location and the router; the repeater receives your Wi-Fi signal and amplifies it, increasing its reach.
#7. Go Wired
While Wi-Fi speed has significantly improved over the past few years, it’s still not as fast as Ethernet.
Try attaching an ethernet cable to your device to see if it improves your internet speed.
#8. Cancel Background Apps
If you’re downloading files or streaming videos, chances are, it’s impacting your bandwidth negatively.
The more intensely you’re using your internet, the slower it’s going to get.
So, check which apps are open on your devices, and whether they’re downloading anything. You might, for example, discover one of your software tools or games is conducting an automated update, and is the reason for your slow internet.
#9. Scan for Viruses
Some viruses can significantly slow down your bandwidth by using up your internet.
A virus can constantly track your computer activity and send it to a hacker. And while that’s certainly a bigger worry than slow internet speed, it can also drain your bandwidth. So, scan your devices to ensure you’re virus-free.
If you’re not using an antivirus, we recommend going with VIPRE, an award-winning antivirus software.
#10. Contact Your ISP
If all else fails, the fault might be with your internet service provider.
They might have an issue on their end, and there’s nothing you can personally do to fix it.
So, contact your ISP and ask if they can increase your bandwidth.
Hopefully, this article helped you increase your bandwidth and speed up your internet.
Thanks for the read, and make sure to check out some of the other top articles on our blog.