What Is a Good Internet Speed?
Find out about download speeds, upload speeds, Wi-Fi hacks, and more.
Bottom line: What are good internet download speeds?
The right download speed depends on how many people use the internet in your home and what they use it for.
If you’re the only one at home and your primary online activities are shopping, checking social media, and watching Netflix, you’ll be fine with the FCC’s minimum recommendation—a standard called broadband speed—which is 25 Mbps.
But if you have more people around, keep connected with smart home devices, or work from home, your experience will be better if you get higher download speeds.
What are good internet upload speeds?
The broadband internet standard for upload speeds is 3 Mbps. Upload speeds don’t have to be as fast as download speeds, since the most common activities like looking at pictures, reading, or watching video on the internet are download-heavy and don’t require a lot of upload capacity.
But if you’re posting pictures to social media, sending videos to a friend, or holding a conference call, you’re uploading more significant amounts of data, which means upload speeds are more important.
Zoom recommends you have upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps for crystal clear Zoom video conferencing. And if you’re streaming online games, you may need as many as 6 Mbps.
What are slow internet speeds?
Download speeds below the 25 Mbps broadband standard are too slow to meet the average American household’s needs.
If you use the internet only for searching Google and using Facebook—or you’re just patient enough to wait for pages to take a while to download—you might be fine using internet speeds slower than 25 Mbps.
But your movies and games will download much more quickly if you upgrade to a faster internet speed.
I pay for fast internet speeds, but my Wi-Fi still seems slow. What can I do?
Even the fastest routers have trouble beaming your Wi-Fi signal through walls or furniture. If you notice your Zoom calls cut out or your PS4 takes forever to download a new game, see if you can find an Ethernet cable in your odd-and-ends closet or buy one on Amazon.
With an Ethernet cable, you can wire laptops, PCs, and most game consoles directly to your router to take full advantage of the speeds you pay for. A wired connection might seem a bit old school, but it can take your internet speeds to a whole new level.
What is my download speed?
If you want to see how fast your internet is, you can try a speed test like this one on HighSpeedInternet.com. You’ll get the most accurate results by plugging in an Ethernet cable, turning off your Wi-Fi, and closing all other programs besides the test.
You can use the test when you’re on Wi-Fi to see how fast your Wi-Fi signal is, but you’ll probably find your download speed is much slower on Wi-Fi than it would be with an Ethernet connection.
Is 20 Mbps a good download speed?
The broadband standard is 25 Mbps download, 3 Mbps upload—so 20 Mbps is a bit slower than the current standard for an average-performing internet speed. It’s not great for supporting multiple internet users, especially if you enjoy streaming TV at the same time.
But if you’re the only one using your internet service, you use an Ethernet cable, and you don’t mind a bit of buffering from time to time, then 20 Mbps will probably be fast enough to support most of your online needs.
Is 100 Mbps a good download speed?
You’ll find 100 Mbps supports most homes’ internet needs well, even if you have multiple users and some smart devices. You’ll still get fast speeds on a Wi-Fi connection with most routers, and your Switch or PS4 should download games quickly.
But if you find 100 Mbps speeds are too slow for your needs, you may need to upgrade to a faster plan, get a new router, or connect with an Ethernet cord.