100 Mbps in 2024? Understanding why it still enough

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Are you impressed by internet speeds of 300, 600 Mbps, 1 Gbps, or even 10 Gbps and think they're science fiction? If where you live you barely reach 100 Mbps, don't worry; that's more than enough. A study in the UK conducted by the Broadband Stakeholder Group shows that most households really don't need more than 50 Mbps.

How much bandwidth do we really need for a stable home internet experience? The required bandwidth will vary widely depending on the size of the household, the number of users, connected devices, online activities, and more.

A 100 Mbps connection is still more than sufficient for most users, based on current data and a clear understanding of what "Internet speed" and "bandwidth" really mean.

Understanding Internet Speed and Bandwidth - the Water Pipe Metaphor:

Bandwidth is like a water pipe

Imagine that the Internet is like a system of water pipes in your home.

If the water flows quickly (more pressure), you'll fill a water bucket faster. Similarly, with a wide bandwidth, you can indeed download very large files more quickly, but in domestic matters, this rarely happens. The transmission speed remains the same, i.e., the ping, which is the time it takes for the signal to travel from one device to another, is exactly the same, whether you have 100 megabits or 10 gigabits. Gamers, brokers, online stock traders, streamers, etc., need little bandwidth but require speed. For this reason, they should connect via cable from the router, as Wi-Fi always introduces latency, which means receiving the signal a little later. Another thing to consider is that we often subscribe to bandwidths of 1 Gbps when most devices in a home, except for the computer, don't have network cards faster than 100 megabits.

So, to have a good internet experience, you need both large pipes (good bandwidth) and good water pressure (high Mbps). This ensures you can do many things online at the same time, and everything works quickly.

A study by the Broadband Stakeholder Group revealed that an average household only needs around 10 to 20 Mbps for daily tasks such as streaming, web browsing, and telecommuting. Internet-intensive households, including multiple 4K streams and online gaming, rarely exceed 40-50 Mbps. The study found that only 1% of households require more than 78 Mbps, which is still below 100 Mbps.

Bandwidth Needs

100 Mbps: A Solid Standard:

With a 100 Mbps connection, households have more than enough speed to handle all their internet needs, even allowing for multiple data-intensive activities simultaneously. This speed ensures a smooth and uninterrupted online experience, suitable for most modern usage patterns.

The Role of Bandwidth:

As devices and applications become more advanced, the effective bandwidth of an internet connection becomes crucial. A speed of 100 Mbps provides comfortable bandwidth to support multiple connected devices, ensuring that each one has enough "space" on the network to function correctly.

Internet Usage in Spain

So, Why Is My Wi-Fi Slow?

Bandwidth Needs for Video

If your internet plan is 50 Mbps and you notice slow speeds, it's likely that you need to improve signal transmission within your home. While your service provider guarantees those 50 Mbps to your router, the Wi-Fi signal emitted from there can quickly weaken due to distance and physical obstructions like walls. Using Wi-Fi repeaters or Powerline Communication (PLC) devices can help, but only to a certain extent. The most effective solution is to optimize the network by wiring as many connections as possible, running a cable directly from the router to each feasible room. Once you've wired your home, you can install Wi-Fi transmitters at these points to ensure the signal maintains its strength. This way, you can make the most of your 50 Mbps plan, enjoying internet speeds comparable to 300 or 600 Mbps plans. This is because, as we've seen, the required bandwidth is actually much lower than you might think.

In Summary

It's tempting to chase the highest internet speeds offered by providers. However, studies and analysis of actual internet usage show us that a 100 Mbps connection is not only adequate but also efficient for most households. This speed level provides a balance between solid performance and rational bandwidth usage, covering the current digital needs of most families.

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