Testing Your Broadband Speed (#1156)

Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. On today’s
episode let’s look at broadband speed tests. So if you have a broadband connection either
through DSL, cable modem, or some other source you may want to check it every once in a while
to see if you are getting the kind of speed that you are paying for. So check your bill
or check your documentation to see what speed you are getting and then go to one of the
many websites where you can actually check your speed and see what it really is. There are a ton of different websites that
have speed tests on them. If your search for speed test you will come up with a whole list.
Some of these are independent companies. Some of these are apps that you can use on mobile
devices. Some of these are actually linked to the company you may be using. For instance
here is Comcast and here is AT&T and Time Warner down here. So there is a lot of different
ones. Now while big companies probably do give you
accurate results, of course you can’t really say they are unbiased because they want to
show they are giving you what you pay for. So I prefer to stay away from them even though,
probably, the results are going to be about the same. Instead I would stick with some
of the other independent ones. A lot of people use this one Speakeasy. I’ll
just pick that one for now but you can just choose anyone that you like. There’s another
one called DSL Speedtest that is pretty good. I’m going to go ahead and just select any
city because, of course, any website that you are connecting to is going to be somewhere
other than where you are probably. So it really doesn’t matter. Just pick something like maybe
the top one here, Seattle. Then it will start the test and you’ll see
it will take a little while. It is basically going to download some data and test that
speed. Then when it’s done downloading that data it is going to do the opposite. It is
going to upload and test the upload speed. So you can see I’m getting a little over 42
MB per second, which is great because I’m paying for 40. Then the upload speed, you
can see, is going to be much lower here. Some services have the same down and upload speeds
and some have much slower upload speed. I’m paying for 5. I wish I had more but I’m paying
for 5 and you can see I’m getting better than that. So that’s a good deal there. I can now go
and maybe do another speed test here and compare those results. Now one of the problems with a speed test
like that is that it is testing your speed at the very moment. Now if you test many times
and you find that you are always getting speeds lower than what you should be you may want
to give your ISP a call. It may be something simple like they need to maintenance on your
line or maybe just ship you a new modem. It may not cost you anything and you get up to
the speed that you are supposed to get. Anything that can happen is that you may want
to check their current plans or ask them about it. It may be that you are paying for an old
plan that costs the same as a newer plan that will give you more speed. So for no money
at all you can actually be getting a higher speed now. I hear about cable companies and
telephone companies doing this all the time. Leaving people on these old speeds and when
they could actually upgrade them for the same price, sometimes even cheaper, to a new higher
speed plan. So you definitely want to ask about that. I mean if you are paying for it
you might as well get the top speed that you can.

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