Why is my Internet so slow? How to fix it?
There are many reasons why an Internet connection can become slow.
The most common reasons include:
The solutions listed below will teach you how to fix this issue and improve the Internet speed. Check them out and follow the instructions carefully.
Maybe it's not the Internet, maybe it's your device that is slow. To be absolutely sure that it's actually the Internet connection, test your Internet speed with a tester like speedtest. Click Begin Test and wait for the results. The minimum Internet speed a user needs for a good browsing experience is around 10 Mbps download speed and 1 Mbps upload speed and ping less than 10 ms.
If you discover that your Internet is indeed slow, check out the other solutions.
The reason why the Internet is slow on your smartphone or tablet may not be the Internet itself, but your device's operating system. The operating system is a complex work of art with many tasks and processes running in the background, each of which is designated a duty so that you enjoy a seamless experience while using the device. Some processes are responsible for playing music, others for connecting your device to the Internet, others for getting the most out of the Internet speed. Maybe the Internet is running slow because an application became unresponsive, or a system process got stuck. Restart your mobile device will restart all the tasks and processes on your operating system, and possibly resolve this issue.
Press and hold the power button and turn off your device. Then, turn your device back on after 2 minutes of inactivity, and check if your Internet is slow again.
Another reason why the Internet connection can be slow is the place where the router is positioned. TVs, microwaves, computers, and other appliances can interfere with the router's signal and weaken it.
The solution in this case is to place your router away from other electronic devices, as much as possible. In that way, the signal will be stronger and the Internet speed faster.
Maybe the Internet speed is slow because the Internet plan you are subscribed to doesn't meet your needs.
To check this if this is the case:
If the current Internet speed doesn't match or isn't close enough to the one you pay for, report the problem to the ISP. If the speeds match, then there is a different issue, such as a virus that has invaded your computer, or the Internet plan doesn't meet your needs (in this case, you should consider upgrading it).
Should you decide to upgrade the Internet plan, make sure to think carefully about what you need the Internet connection for (games, streaming, watching TV, browsing the net only, office business, programming etc.). For instance, If you are a gamer, you need a greater Internet traffic (more than 100 GB or unlimited), low ping value, and high download speed (around 20 - 30 Mbps).
An average Internet speed (10 - 20 Mbps Download speed) should be enough for a simple web browsing or an office business.
If you use a router and your Internet speed is slow on one computer or on all the devices, you might be experiencing issues with the quality and strength of your Wi-Fi signal. People usually place the router in a corner of their house/apartment and the signal that the router emits is being absorbed by the walls. The closer your devices are to the router, the better.
You can know which position is best for the router to be placed on, by observing the Wi-Fi signal strength icon on your device.
Routers, aside from modems are the main Internet distributors throughout the household. They can sometimes be the culprit for slow Internet speed, too. For example, the Internet connection was interrupted at a certain point, and the router failed to reconnect to it, properly.
The simplest way to fix this issue is to restart the router, by "power-cycling" it. Unplug the router's power cord from the outlet and wait for 5 minutes. After that, plug it back in the outlet and everything should be fine.
Every browser has different requirements for best performance. Maybe, although rare, the browser you use doesn't work well on your device. Install another web browser, open websites and check the speed of the Internet connection.
The most used web browsers according include Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera etc.
Windows has a tool that allows for a user to manage the power settings, with the aim being to shut down system components that aren't used and save power. Maybe the current power plan settings are the issue, since they disable a component (in this case a network component) that isn't supposed to be disabled. To change the power plan settings, and improve the Internet speed, follow the steps below:
Reboot the computer and once it turns on, go to speedtest.net to test your Internet speed.
Note: The options in step 5 may vary from computer to computer or Wi-Fi adapter.
If you reported your problem regarding slow Internet connection and your Internet service provider exhausted every option to find a solution to it, you should subscribe to a new provider.
There are always more options available. All you need to do is to check the Internet plans of other providers carefully and make sure to ask if there is a good bandwidth coverage in your area.
Also, ask other users about their personal experience with the provider you intend to choose, in order to find out more information.
If your Internet is running slow after you bought a new router it is possible that your connection isn't password-protected, and a neighbor is connected to it, using it too. Every time you buy a router and install it for the first time, the security feature is not enabled and everybody who is in your router's Wi-Fi range can connect to it and "borrow" your Internet.
To seal this security gap, all you need to do is to activate the security feature offered by the router. In order to do that you need to access your router by following the manufacturer's instructions and set a password which nobody except you and your close family won't know. Make sure to choose WPA2-PSK encryption method, because it is impossible to be decrypted.
If you are unsure how to access the router, check out the how to access my router guide.
Maybe the reason why your Internet connection is slow is the ISP/Operator itself, due to technical difficulties they are not aware of. Contact them and let them know of this issue. They will instruct you on how to troubleshoot, and resolve the issue by yourself, in case if there isn't a problem on their end.
Whatever action we do on our device results in leaving "traces" behind on our devices. The purpose of these files is to help us browse the Internet faster, open programs faster, and many other actions with a sole purpose - faster experience. Too many temp files and cached data may slow down your device's operating system, and the web browser, the result of which is slower Internet.
To improve the Internet speed, you need to clear these files, after which they will be replaced with clean and brand-new files.
To learn how to remove temp files and clear the cache, check out the how to clear the cache solutions.
If you wonder why is your Internet so slow it is possible that you have exceeded your monthly limit without even realizing, or an app running in the background is using the Internet connection.
Software like uTorrent (Windows or Mac) and BitTorrent (Windows or Mac), which people use to download movies, music, games, software among the rest are set to start automatically when Windows (or Mac) starts and they work in the background, sharing (uploading) the files you have downloaded before, without you being aware of that.
When the download of a movie, music or other type of files is completed, turn off. In this way you will stop sharing the downloaded content, unless you don't want to stop sharing it on purpose. By default, uTorrent is set to start automatically when Windows (or Mac) starts.
To learn how to quit uTorrent and other programs, check out the how to close (quit) programs/applications guide.
If Comcast is your Internet provider, call them on 1-800-XFINITY (1-800-934-6489) and let them know about this issue. They are available 24/7 to assist you.
Another reason for slow Internet is a process running in the background. There are programs which can and may run in the background without your knowledge, decrease your Internet speed and use your computer's resources. You might have installed one of those programs by visiting a website or by installing another application. One process won't use the full Internet speed, however many processes running in the background can lead to this issue.
In order to fix this issue to limit the number of programs running in the background. You can easily identify them and disable them in the Task Manager, by following the steps below:
Alternatively, you can disable and prevent them from starting when Windows starts, from the Startup tab of the Task Manager, by right-clicking a program and selecting Disable.
Note: If you use Windows 7, the Startup tab is found in msconfig. If you are not sure how to access it, click here to find out.
It is possible that a process running in the background of your Mac has taken over the Internet connection. There are programs which can and may run in the background without your knowledge, decrease your Internet speed and occupy your RAM. You might have installed one of those programs by visiting a website or by installing another application. One process won't use the full Internet speed, however many processes running in the background can make the Internet slower.
You can easily identify them, and disable most of them, in the Activity Monitor, by following the steps below:
Note: Alternatively, you can disable programs and prevent them from starting when Mac starts via Users & Groups. If you are not sure how, click here to find out.
If you are not sure how to increase the Internet speed and Time Warner Cable is your ISP, call them on 1-800-892-4357, and they will suggest you the actions you need to take.
If Verizon is your Internet service provider and your Internet connection is slow, call them on 1-800-922-0204.
If AT&T is your Internet provider and if you wonder why is AT&T Internet so slow, consider calling them on 1-800-225-5288, and they will address your issue and fix it.
If Cox is your Internet provider, call them on 800-234-3993 (automated support). They are available 24/7.
If Charter is your Internet provider, call them on 1-888-438-2427.
If Suddenlink is your Internet provider, call them on 877-794-2724.
If Cable One is your Internet provider, call them on 1-888-204-9383. They are available 24/7.
If Centurylink is your Internet provider and you experience this issue, try calling them on +1 877-837-5738.
If you didn't manage to call them, go to their troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix this issue.
Note: You may be asked to enter your ZIP code.
If Frontier Communications is your Internet provider, call them on 1-800-921-8101.
Click here to visit the TWC'S troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Suddenlink's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Frontier's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Centurylink's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Note: You may be asked to enter your ZIP code.
Click here to visit Charter's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Cable One's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit AT&T's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Verizon's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Comcast's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
Click here to visit Cox's troubleshooting page, which will try to diagnose and fix your problem.
If you are subscribed to a fast Internet connection, but you still have issues with browsing the net, watching videos and other activities on your mobile device, your network settings might be inaccurate. This mostly happens when you are in another country.
The first thing you need to do is to inform yourself about the network mode you are using (GSM/WCDMA/LTE auto), and the restrictions (some countries use 2G network, others 3G, and the most developed ones 4G LTE). Then, you need to adjust the network settings.
To learn more about your network settings, and adjust them, follow the steps below:
If you’re a 3G user make sure there’s something other than GSM or CDMA active (WCDMA is fine, that’s a form of 3G).
Note: Every change you make may take up to 30 seconds or more to come into effect.
When you set a complex website, i.e. a website which requires more time to load, as a home page, it will take a bit more time for the browser to start working properly. It is because of the many elements the website is composed of, which cannot be loaded quickly. As a result, you will have to wait for the page to load before you can browse the net.
The best solution is to set a home page which is simple to use and which would take much less time for the browser to load it.
To learn how to set a homepage, check out the how to set my homepage guide.
Maybe your mobile device is slow and not the Internet connection. If you want to use the device's full potential and get rid of bugs, update it regularly, as soon as an update is available.
To learn how to update your device, check out the how to update a device's operating system guide.
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