Managing bandwidth means taking measures to ensure your devices are not overloading the amount of internet bandwidth that is available for you. Background apps, automatic updates, streaming at too high of a resolution, and too many devices running at once can all bring your internet speeds to a halt. By taking some practical steps and understanding bandwidth better you can improve your internet experience. Webformix wireless internet services don’t have any data caps. However, there are functional limitations in the overall amount of bandwidth available. When customers optimize their home networks and internet use habits they are able to get the most from their service plan.
Managing Bandwidth: Downloads
Most downloads don’t eat up too much bandwidth. Very large files such as games and apps can sometimes run into issues. Download speeds vary based on the wireless internet plan you choose. Downloading files, in general, will take longer on cheaper internet plans. If you know you need to download a very large file it is best to do so late in the evening when there is less overall internet traffic as well as less in-house internet traffic. If you have the extra speed Super Power User Plan or even the Power User Plan, you are less likely to need to plan your downloads.
How Long Do Downloads Take?
On the Webformix Value Streaming Plan, a 1 GB download takes about 23 minutes. However, a 5 GB download would take most of the night. If there are other devices using the internet while you are downloading, that will also slow your overall download speed regardless of the service tier. That 1 GB download would take about 15 minutes on Webformix Premium Streaming Plan. If you are on the Power User service tier, you can download it in about 7 minutes, or even faster on the Super Power User Plan. When it comes to a 5 GB download, the Super Power User Plan can finish in about 23 minutes. You can estimate download time by using an online calculator.
The takeaway is that the less you pay and the more devices you have on the internet, the longer downloads will take. For some people, this occasional long wait is tolerable. For others, a higher service tier will be needed to meet the needs of more frequent large file downloads. Also, note that if a large file is “zipped” it will make downloading it easier since it is compressed. Once downloaded, you can “un-zip” it to retrieve the file.
Managing Bandwidth: Devices
Think of your internet bandwidth as a highway and your devices as cars. If you have multiple laptops, smart TVs, phones, and other devices like security cameras, smart thermostats, and smart home technology, that means you might create a traffic jam. Limiting the number of devices using the internet is key to managing bandwidth. Again, the less you pay, the less speed is available, and fewer “highway lanes” will be open. Since Webformix has no caps, there is no “speed limit” other than the maximum allowances of the service tier. However, that means only you can solve the traffic jam on your home network by turning off some of the devices.
Should I Disable Automatic Updates?
Automatic updates and apps or updates that are running in the background of your device are not visible on your computer screen but accessible from your task manager or notification center. These background apps and updates draw from your total available bandwidth. If you are experiencing slower than normal internet speeds, check if there are updates or background apps running. Some people choose to disable automatic updates and background app use altogether. However, it is important to keep your operating system and software up to date. A better solution is generally to pause the update and restart it later.
Managing Bandwidth: Streaming
The last major consideration in managing bandwidth within your home is video streaming. Our Webformix Streaming Guide goes into more specific details. You will want to keep in mind, again, that your internet use habits need to work within the limitations of the internet plan you choose. So if you have the Value Streaming Plan, you can only stream on one device and you need the video to be set to play in standard definition (SD). If you want to stream in high definition (HD) or have multiple devices streaming at the same time, you need a wireless internet plan like the Power User Plan or Super Power User Plan.
Remember that the biggest issue with managing bandwidth is when you are trying to exceed the limitations of your plan. You can always change your plan if you find that you need more speed! With a better understanding of bandwidth, you also have the option to change your habits to have a better experience on a cheaper plan.