Maximize your internet speed with everyone at home

Do you find yourself with multiple people in your house working or schooling from home, taking ballet or piano lessons via video, and hanging out with friends on digital group chats? Many households are facing similar challenges, stretching the limits of their internet connection. If your new stay-at-home lifestyle is causing your home network to slow down, here are some tips to help you speed it back up.

Limit the number of devices connected at the same time

The list may be way longer than you realize, including not only smartphones and computers, but also: 

  • Google Home/Amazon Alexa
  • Smart Home devices
  • Security devices (cameras, Ring doorbells)
  • Tiles and other GPS trackers for keys, etc.
  • Smart Air purifiers
  • Smart TVs
  • Smart appliances such as refrigerators and ovens

Whenever possible, try to turn some of these devices off when not in use to maximize available bandwidth. Consider having family members stagger their online schedules or work in “shifts,” for instance.

Minimize streaming during work and school hours

Similarly, try to alternate work and leisure time so that you're not trying to stream your favorite shows while someone else in the family is on a video conference. All of these media services tend to use high bandwidth, and so will impact the performance of other activities in the home:

  • Netflix, Hulu, YouTube TV and other video streaming services
  • Online gaming systems 
  • Music streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify 
  • Streaming devices like Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV

In addition, it's helpful to turn those separate devices off when not in use (not just let them go into "sleep" mode). 

Minimize VPN usage

Depending on your employer, you may need a VPN connection to access secure corporate systems and data. However, many work applications like Outlook, MS Teams and web browsing do not require the VPN connection. Your speed and performance may improve when the VPN is not connected, so try to use it only when necessary. For example, group together tasks that require the VPN connection, and then turn it off when those tasks are complete.

Finally, limit your uploading and downloading of large files during the work/school day, and schedule cloud-based backups to happen overnight to free up daytime bandwidth.

It may take some planning and practice, but by following these guidelines, you can optimize your home connection and make it possible for everyone in your household to keep your lives running online.

Still not getting the internet strength you need?

Have you tried everything and are just not getting the performance you need? There are a couple of popular solutions you might consider:

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