Internet bandwidth matters, but it’s not as simple as upload and download speed.

We work with Jason Terry of Blue Gurus to support a number of mutual clients, and he called the other day from a client’s site about their Internet bandwidth. We were in the process of upgrading their connection from 20 MB to 50 MB of total Internet bandwidth.

Internet BandwidthA simple speed test can confirm the capacity of the link, and Jason was getting 20 MB, as the upgrade hadn’t gone through. A while later, our engineers had increased the speed, but it came with a warning. “Their total internet usage never exceeds 10 MB at any given moment, so I doubt they’ll notice much difference.”

Google Fiber has conditioned us to demand much higher bandwidth with their groundbreaking gigabit offerings. Many other providers have also now deployed much higher speeds. And that is all good. But it’s not the whole story.

Here are some of the scenarios that can affect Internet performance:

  • Bad WiFi connections
  • Slow router/firewall
  • Heavy competing traffic on your local network
  • Heavy traffic on a shared public network like a cable connection
  • Limits on upload speeds from the receiving end
  • Bandwidth-consuming malware

In the case with Jason and our mutual client, we were able to provide a substantial increase in bandwidth for a small monthly rate increase. It was worth it to the client to upgrade and rule out their Internet speed as the source of any performance problems.

But because what the user wants is end-to-end performance of the Internet, it helps to have someone who can identify other bandwidth issues. Often, Avid is able to do this alone; in tougher cases we work with a company’s IT vendor to get to the root cause. So bandwidth matters, but it’s not as simple as upload and download speeds. There are many hardware and software variables at play. Which is why you need an internet service provider that knows what they are doing, and is able to work well with other vendors to get to the bottom of any “internet issues” you might be having.

Does your staff constantly complain about your internet connection? We’d love to talk to you. Give us a call at 816.994.7070.

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