Wednesday, May 14, 2014

What Affects My Internet Speed?

Which of the following 1Mbps Internet connections offer the fastest download speed at any given time?
1Mbps consumer DSL
1Mbps business DSL
1Mbps fibre Internet for consumers
1Mbps dedicated Internet
Consumer DSL vs business DSL
Consumer DSL was a big improvement over dialup lines. Using the same telephone wires, you can use the phone while staying connected to the Internet. Those familiar with dialup Internet appreciates this. However, one should note these key terms used for DSL advertisements --“Up To” or “Maximum Speed”. What this simply means is that the ISP indicates the highest possible speed, but there is no guarantee that you can get that speed at any given time.
Another thing to note is the difference between consumer DSL and business DSL. Consumer DSL gives a faster download speed than upload. On the other hand, business DSL may give similar speeds for both downloading and uploading. In addition, business DSL typically gives a higher minimum speed than consumer DSL. 
It is important to note that your DSL modem is connected to the nearest telephone exchange, and the exchange is connected to the telco backbone, which is in turn connected to the Internet gateways. DSL speed is affected by distance, hence, those closer to the exchange will have faster speeds than those who are farther away. The size of the exchange’s connection to the backbone also becomes a factor during peak hours when everybody is downloading and data traffic occurs. It is not a telco trick. It is simply how DSL works.
Speed factors at home
The applications used in your PC can also affect speed. If your home connection is shared and someone else is downloading large files, then expect your connection to be affected. You can also go to Task Manager-Networking to check if your PC has unusual network activity. Some malware could be sending spam from your computer and slowing down your connection.
Internet gateways
A good ISP has multiple high-speed connections to the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific backbones. This also means being connected to different submarine cable systems at different landing sites to ensure resiliency during cable cuts. This is capital intensive and is what separates the big boys from the smaller ISPs.
Fibre connection for consumers

Fibre connections for consumers offer higher maximum speeds than DSL. However, maximum speeds are still not guaranteed.
Dedicated Internet
Dedicated Internet connections are used by companies that require a guaranteed bandwidth or CIR. This premium-rate service penalizes the ISP if the guaranteed bandwidth is not met, or if an un-scheduled downtime takes longer than the agreed maximum period. This is the reason Philippine-based BPOs have very fast Internet connections and consumer DSL users do not.
To answer the question, the 1Mbps dedicated Internet connection offers the fastest download speed at any given time, even if they are all rated at 1Mbps.

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