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How Internet Latency Affects Web Speeds

There's nothing worse than a slow internet connection. Whether you use the internet for gaming, work, or to browse social media, a slow connection results in a ton of wasted time and frustration. If you suffer from slow internet, it might be an internet latency issue.

internet latency can affect your speeds online

Internet latency is one of the driving factors in a speedy connection. Keep reading to learn more about internet latency, and how to reduce it.

What Is Internet Latency?

Another way to think of internet latency is to think of it as internet delay. It describes the amount of time it takes for your computer to respond to your actions. If you click on a link on the web and it loads up instantly, that's an example of good internet latency.

If it loads for a good while before popping up, though, that might mean you have poor latency. If you've ever played an online video game and experienced "lag", this is due to poor latency.

What Is a Good Latency?

The best way to check your internet latency is by doing an internet latency test, or "ping" test. You can do this simply by typing "ping" into the Command program on your PC. The lower your ping, the better your connection.

A good ping for some is not a good ping for others. It all depends on what you're using the internet for. Generally, though, any ping under 100ms is considered good. If you're a gamer, anything around 50 or lower is best.

Of course, everyone wants to shoot for a 0ms ping if possible, but that's usually not realistic. Just try to get as close as possible for the fastest connection.

Why Is My Latency Bad?

There are a lot of factors that affect internet latency. From your geographic location to your router and the ISP itself, there are countless things that can slow your internet. If you're in a more rural/country area, for example, you probably experience worse latency than a typical city user.

Latency also worsens depending on how many people are using a single internet connection. If you're living with a big family, you might experience much higher latency when everyone is connected.

How Do I Reduce Latency?

Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to improve your internet latency. If you're suffering from a bad connection, give these methods a shot.

Use an Ethernet Cable

Latency is typically worse over a WiFi connection than it is a wired connection. Information simply can't travel as efficiently through the airwaves as it can through a direct, wired connection.

If you want to see an instant and drastic improvement to your internet latency, just get an ethernet cable. Plug into one of the ports on your router, then plug that into your PC or game console.

Not only will this improve latency for you, but for everyone else on the WiFi. It frees up the wireless connection a little, meaning faster speeds for everyone. Use a wired connection whenever possible for the best latency.

Get a New Router/Move Closer

Not all routers are built equally. Some are much better at catching a signal and spreading it throughout your home. One of the simplest ways to reduce internet latency and get faster speeds is by investing in a good router.

You could also move closer to your router. The closer you are the farther the connection has to travel, meaning faster speeds in general. Of course, if you're getting that close you might as well use an ethernet cable.

Talk to Your Internet Service Provider

Your ISP has all the control over your internet connection. Likely, the package you're paying for promises a certain speed. Equally likely, there's a better package available with less latency.

Talk to your ISP about their packages, and ask whether there's a faster one available. If not, you might want to look at other ISPs in your area. Maybe look for one closer to your community, especially if you're in a rural area.

There are plenty of options for internet service in rural areas, you just have to look around.

Switch to Fiber Internet

Fiber is often considered the fastest internet around. With fiber internet, the connection is sent through a cable. This equates to a much better connection than typical satellite internet, which has to travel all the way to your computer from space.

Fiber internet isn't available everywhere, but if it's in your area, give it a try.

Close Background Programs

The more programs you have open that are running off the internet, the more latency you're going to experience. This is because the internet connection is being stretched across multiple programs, each one struggling for dominance.

Closing extra tabs and shutting off those background processes is often enough to reduce latency a bit and give you a faster connection.

Restart the Router

Sometimes, all you need to do to improve latency is restart your router. 

Routers get strained after a long time of continual use. Restarting your router will refresh it, improving your internet connection and reducing latency. If you've noticed a sudden increase in internet latency, this could be the simple, quick answer you're looking for.

Lessen Your Internet Latency Today

It's 2020, you don't have to suffer through high internet latency anymore. Give the tips above a shot and send that high internet latency packing. You'll be working, gaming, or just browsing at lightning speeds in no time.

If you're looking for a reliable, fast internet service provider in Ontario, see what Wave Direct can do for you. Contact us and ask us about our free 30 day trial!

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