Streaming Media and Home Networking
Currently, video and audio streaming is the top way which people use to consume content. But streaming content is only effective if your home network is strong enough. Generally, streaming usually puts any home network through intense strain. The effect is even more noticeable in case there are multiple users on the same network.
So, how can you increase your home internet’s bandwidth?
Well, this heavily depends on the internet speeds and the quality that your service provider offers. But another thing which influences internet speed or quality is the type of router.
A lot of people who struggle with slow home internet connection sometimes fail to understand that the ISP may not be the issue but the hardware. This is a critical network component which also helps to ensure that home internet connection is stable, reliable, and also fast.
Old routers cannot sufficiently meet the needs of most internet users.
Apart from making streaming difficult, people use various devices to access the internet. This includes tablets, laptops, and smartphones, among others. Remember that some surveillance cameras, video doorbells, and smart TVs also use internet connection. If you are using an old router, then it must work harder to meet the needs of these competing devices. As a result, you will end up with a slow network connection.
On average, a home that contains multiple users e.g., 4-5 active users’ needs internet speeds of 90 Mbps. However, you need to remember that the interference from building materials as well as the size of your home should be taken into account.
- For one person to stream a standard-definition video, the minimum required internet speeds is 3 Mbps.
- For one person to stream an HD video, they need internet speeds of 5 Mbps.
- For a single person to stream 4K or ultra-HD videos, they need at least 25 Mbps.
- For a person to stream music that’s encoded at say 380 Kbps, then you’ll need 3 Mbps. In case the music files are uncompressed, then you will need around 5 Mbps.
It’s worth noting that internet speeds and bandwidth are not the same. Even though they are sometimes used interchangeably, there is a huge difference between these two terms. Speed is considered as the rate which data can be uploaded or downloaded using an internet connection. Bandwidth, on the other hand, refers to the maximum data amount, which can be transmitted via an internet connection. Both speed and bandwidth are usually measured in Mbps.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Home Network
By now, you know that apart from subscribing to a good ISP, you need to invest in a good router. Your home network hardware needs to be periodically updated as well to match the requirement of ever-evolving technology. To get the most out of how your home network, you need to ensure that:
- The router Wi-Fi should entirely cover your home.
- Ensure that your internet service plan is sufficient.
- Do a speed test to ensure that the router provides the internet speeds which you have subscribed to.
Have you ever noticed that there are some spots in your home which have faster internet speeds while others are extremely slow? Besides that, why do these spots change sometimes? Well, you need to know that Wi-Fi normally acts like sound or light waves. It can be affected by interference and distance. This means that the strength can reduce with distance. Furthermore, windows and doors may result in interference. What this means that the closer you are to the router, the better the connection. The converse is also true.
If you are using the home internet and you are far away from the router, then you are likely to experience multiple dead zones. Overall, make sure that the router you are using has the latest router standards. It should also meet the internet speeds that you are paying for. Anything lower than that means that you are not getting value for your money.