Computer & PC Help

Can You Increase Your Download Speeds Without Increasing Your Bill?21 Dec

This is an article written by Johnathan Blakley
There’s some good information in this…

Fast internet has become a necessity. Whether you go online to run a business, shop, listen to music or watch TV, you can’t do much in today’s world without a speedy connection.
Unfortunately, though, most internet service providers know this, and with a lot of people now switching away from cable, these big businesses are making up for lost revenue by charging more for what we really need.

However, the last thing any one of us wants to do is spend more money on the internet. It’s already expensive and upgrading your service can tack on a hefty amount onto your monthly bill.
But you don’t always need to increase your bill to get better download speeds. There are other options. Here’s a few to get you started.

Begin with a Test

The first thing you should do before making some changes, though, is to test your current connection. If you don’t, then you’ll never really know if you’ve improved. You can do this by simply typing “run speed test” into Google. The first hit will take you a site where you can check speeds for free.

You may want to do this a few times, largely because internet speeds tend to vary according to the time of day. But doing this first will give a benchmark to work from, which will help tell you if the tricks we’re about to discuss are actually doing something to increase your internet speed.

Get a New/Additional Router

One of the first things you need to realize about your internet connection is that the speed delivered through your modem and your router may be different. The modem is what connects you to your ISP’s lines, whereas the router is what delivers the connection to your devices.
Routers have limits as to the connection speeds they can emit, and this usually correlates to when they were manufactured. So, if you bought your router five years ago, then it’s likely it can only handle top speeds from that time, which are much slower than what you get now.
This can create a situation where you’re paying for 100 Mbps but only getting 30. Consider upgrading your router to something that can handle the connection you’re paying for, and this should help increase speeds.

Another thing to consider is where your router is in your home. If the signal has to travel through several walls to get to where you’re connecting to the internet, then it’s likely you’ll get a bad connection.
The solution here is to either move your router closer to where you use the internet. Or, you could get an additional router that delivers a stronger connection to other parts of your home.

You can also buy a range extender, which will do the same thing but may cost a bit less than another router.
Plug in Using an Ethernet Cord

WIFI has come a long way, but it can still sometimes struggle to deliver the highest possible speeds. As a result, if you’re interested in boosting speeds without raising your bill, then consider plugging into your router the old-fashioned way using an Ethernet cord.
Of course, you can only do this with computers and smart devices such as TVs. But this could be a good move because it will free up your WiFi airwaves for other devices, helping to deliver a faster connection all around.

Obviously, we all love the convenience of wireless internet, but going back to a corded connection can provide a real speed boost, and it won’t cost you more than a few bucks, assuming you don’t already have an Ethernet cord hanging around.

Change Providers

Increased competition in the ISP marketplace has generally been a good thing for consumers. However, telecommunication companies are notoriously tricky. They like to lure people in with promotional deals, and then after a year or two, they will jack up the price you pay for the same service you’ve always gotten.

This is annoying because these promotional deals are usually quite good. Companies know it takes a lot for people to switch service providers, so they like to throw things at you to encourage action.
But if you’re an existing customer, then you probably can’t take advantage of these great deals. It’s one of the great paradoxes in internet and cable service: you’re charged more for being a loyal customer.

The solution? Change providers. Get on the phone with a competitor and get a quote. You can take this number back to your ISP and let them know that if they don’t match the offer you’ve received from another company then you’ll cancel service.

A lot of times they will match, as they’re deathly afraid of losing customers. But if they won’t, then go ahead and switch. Most ISPs will waive installation fees for new customers, so it’s quite possible that changing providers will get you better speeds without costing you a dime.

Limit Devices and Apps

Real versus actual internet speeds depend on a thing called bandwidth. So, while you may be paying for 100 Mbps of speed, you might never get this on any one device because the bandwidth is clogged. A good analogy is a water pipe. The speed at which water travels through the pipe never changes, but a bigger pipe allows more water to flow through it.
Increasing bandwidth (installing a bigger pipe) will indeed bump up your bill, but there’s another way to increase speeds without spending more money. Just pay attention to how many devices you have hooked up at once. If you have a Smart TV, consider disconnecting it when you’re not using it.
Also, make sure none of your devices are using up bandwidth in the background. Close out apps and shut down programs when you’re not using it. This will help ensure that more bandwidth is available to you on the device you’re using, which means a faster connection.

Give Yourself a Boost

See, getting faster internet speeds doesn’t need to cost you more money. These small changes are easy and cheap, and while they may only provide a small boost in connection speed, this can often be enough to turn your web browsing from a frustrating experience to something far more pleasurable.

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