10 Small Changes that could Improve your Broadband Speed

Anna Byrne

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Many factors play into the broadband speed you’re getting; the type of broadband you have purchased, the provider, how close you are to an exchange, your devices and the software settings on your PC or phone. Here’s a list of changes that you can make that could improve your broadband speed.

1. Control Bandwidth Hogging Background Apps

Spotify, Dropbox, Skype, iPlayer and others are big offenders for automatically running in the background on your PC which can in turn negatively affect your broadband speed. Downloaded apps such as those mentioned above are often defaulted to send content to other users even when they are switched off.

To stop programmes running on your machine click Ctrl+Alt+Del and at Processes select End Task on any programmes you want to stop or read here.

2. The Latest Browsers are Kinder to Broadband Speed

Old browsers can be sluggish and neglected by developers for keeping it in shape. Internet Explorer is the probably the biggest culprit for slow speeds and in general lags behind other browsers such as Google Chrome, Opera, Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Edge although IE9 has many improvements. Regardless upgrading to the latest version of your browser of choice is always a quick, easy and free way to getting faster browsing experience.

3. Out of Date Anti-Virus – Slowly Killing your Programmes

Out of date anti-virus can cause your whole computer to slow down. Browsing is probably the worst affected area making a routine online search a longwinded torturous process. It may also be worth shopping around for anti-virus providers to see which one uses the least about of memory to run. Most anti-virus programmes are a huge resource drains on RAM and since they only protect computer against 40% of malware you may want to consider a more comprehensive cyber solution. If you are continuing to use anti-virus ensure it is from a reputable brand and is light on memory.

4. Remove Unwanted Browser Extensions

Each browser extensions takes up a little bit of speed. Review all the browser extensions you have installed and remove any that you don’t use frequently.

5. Stop Automatic Software Updates and Improve that Broadband Speed

Automatic software updates can eat up a significant amount of bandwidth without asking, for example, Apple. Switch off the updates in the programme’s settings however for security related software such as anti-virus choose manual updates.

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6. Clear your Cache to Boost Net Speed

Caching holds a lot of data such as images and web page information from recent websites visited so that they load quicker if you revisit, however when its full your PC needs to work harder to delete files to make space for new ones slowing it down. While this doesn’t make a massive difference to your speed it helps a little! It’s also quick and easy to remove your browsing history.

7. Password Protect your Wi-Fi to Secure your Broadband Speed

If your Wi-Fi isn’t password protected your neighbours can easily use it and cause your experience to suffer. Ensure it’s encrypted with a password from the time you switch it on.

8. Move your Router for a Stronger Internet Connection

Your signal will be stronger the closer your device is to a router thus improving your broadband speed. Where you place your router can make a big difference in the broadband speed you receive. Position the router high on a wall, at a central point in the property with no obstructions.

9. Try a Wireless Booster to Avoid Blackspots

Wireless boosters extend wi-fi signals rather than improving them. This is useful if you have the router on one side of the property and at another side the connection is much weaker or a black spot exists.

10. Change Frequency Channel on your Wi-Fi Router

Many routers default to the same channel, it’s worth testing out other channels to see if they deliver a higher broadband speed. Check the router manual or online to learn how to switch the channel on your router. Most routers are 2.4ghz with channels 1, 6 and 11 to choose from, to find out more click here.


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