According to statistics, an average global internet speed is 5.6Mbps, while South Koreans are blessed with the highest average of 26.7Mbps – 27% faster than Sweden. For some people in developing countries those numbers are borderline dreamy, however, not all developed countries have it all perfect either. Lately, there have been discoveries regarding shady practices with internet speeds some ISPs have been employing. Namely, they have been using some crooked workarounds so to display false results on your speeds, rather than the ones they are actually delivering.
How to recognize this dirty trick
Finding out if your ISP is playing a trick on you or not is not that hard. Basically, you have to take several internet speed tests and compare the results which will tell you how your actual speeds fare in comparison to those sold to you.
Mind you, these tests must be conducted using specific tools and settings. Why? Well, the ISP’s that are withholding full speeds are using a specific port to show you unreal measurements using Ookla SpeedTest. This port is 8080 and it is no longer used as often as before, so it will show you speeds you wouldn’t usually get through other clogged ports – 80 and 443.
First indicators of bad internet are high latencies during online gaming, choppy video playback on HD or UHD videos, and long download times on big files. If you notice any of these and your speed test shows normal speeds, try several other speed tests which are not powered by Java or Flash, ideally those that are HTML 5 based.
Make sure that there are no active background processes that might siphon the bandwidth from your connection. Also, the browser you use for testing purposes has to be up to date, and most addons and plugins should be deactivated.
Aside from taking speed tests through port 8080, ISPs also establish multiple connections with the server, while services like youtube use single threaded connection. If your connection is working normally, speeds measured using both single threaded and multi threaded connections on both 8080 and regular ports should be similar.
If there are considerable differences between the 2 methods and 2 sub methods, you should take measurements few more times, just for the sake of consistency.
Finally, should those differences be very high even after several measurements, than you can be sure that your ISP is charging you for something you are not getting.
At the very end, cables, modems, receivers and wifi emitters are known to cause problems in internet connection. Especially WiFi, when there are a lot of WiFi devices in your surrounding, they tend to interfere with each other, more often than not.
After eliminating everything from the list, it is time to “point fingers”. Confronting your ISP might be sisyphean task, however, if you succeed in it, not only will you get your full internet speed, but a victory for a small man over a corporation!