To put it briefly, Internet speeds in the 100-200 Mbps range are ideal for most households since they can handle common uses like streaming and video chat for 2-5 users at once. However, there are a number of factors that should also be considered — especially for use cases like home offices and gaming, where upload capacity for files and reaction time for user actions is particularly important.
Along with upload speeds, latency, and your location, another factor to consider is your WiFi network. The average WiFi speed you experience around your home will generally be anywhere from 20-50% below the advertised download speed, due to wireless interference and fade as you move further from the router. With that being said, it’s important to choose a speed slightly faster than what you need to account for network slowdowns.
While each household will have their own definition of what a good internet speed is based on their needs, here are a few simple guidelines on different speeds and what they can handle:
Internet Speed Users Supported Speed Summary 25 Mbps 1-2 Basic 100 Mbps 3-4 Average 200 Mbps 4-5 Fast 500 Mbps 5+ Very Fast 1000 Mbps 5+ Gigabit
To get a quick recommendation based on the number of users and devices in your home, take a look at our bandwidth calculation tool. If you already have WiFi and are having slower than normal speeds, try troubleshooting your WiFi ,or consider learning how to extend your WiFi network.
In this article, we will help you to determine how much internet speed you need based on how many internet users are in your home and how they use the internet.
What is a Good Internet Speed?
Any internet connection above 25 Mbps is a good internet speed. The FCC currently defines a “broadband” internet connection as one that provides at least 25 Mbps for download speed and 3 Mbps for upload. This is a decent benchmark for the average family of three; however, larger households of 3-5 people should consider speeds closer to the 100-200 Mbps range.
In order to be a “good” internet speed, the connection has to meet the needs of the household, which will vary based on number of devices connected and how many people use the connection at once.
The experience using an internet connection depends on several factors:
- How many devices are connected and in use simultaneously?
- How many people are streaming video from Netflix, YouTube, or another service?
- Are you using your home WiFi for competitive online gaming?
- Do you frequently need to send large files for work?
- Do you regularly stream 4k video, or do you mostly stick to simple online tasks?
- Do you get frustrated easily if your game lags or your webpage takes a while to load?
As you can see, good internet speed can mean something different for every household. For instance, if you are using your home WiFi for nothing but web browsing and email, you might feel that you have fast internet with only 10 Mbps.
On the other hand, someone who streams 4k video on multiple devices, plays video games online, and has smart home IoT devices, may not be satisfied with even 100 Mbps. They should look at fiber options like those offered by AT&T Fiber or Frontier FiberOptic which offers higher uploads speeds than other common connections like cable and DSL.
It’s worth mentioning that the range of performance you can get is somewhat relative to your location. Rural areas in states like California and even New York often have much lower speeds (around 25 Mbps) and fewer options, when compared to urban centers within the state which typically have 100+ Mbps plans available, such as Los Angeles, San Diego, or Brooklyn.
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