There are many factors that can cause slower Broadband or reduced performance beyond just the network itself. Your router and devices, wireless performance, home wiring, router placement and even the time of day can all make it slower.
Start by visiting our Network Status page to check for any network issues and how long we expect any problems to last.
The devices you are using
The age of your device can be a factor in your Wi-Fi performance. Typically, the newer your equipment, the faster the wireless speed it will support. (For example: a smartphone from 2013 can handle around half the Wi-Fi speeds of a modern phone).
Test your speed using Speedtest tool to see the speed from your router to the device
Different things can cause a device to slow down, which can give the impression that your broadband is slow. This includes: Running lots of programs at once, insufficient RAM, web browser add-ons and too many startup programs.
How you are using broadband in your home
Broadband speed is shared with every device connected to your Router. So if multiple devices are using the internet at the same time, they'll each get a share of the available speed.
Streaming (watching live TV, YouTube or Netflix) and online gaming use more of your bandwidth, so if anyone in your household is doing this it could make your broadband slower for everyone else.
If you have devices connected that you don’t use, we recommend you disconnect them.
How your home network is set up
Your wireless set-up has a big impact on broadband speed, so by improving your set-up you can enjoy faster broadband.
Try and place your Router close to where you'll use the internet most. Obstacles like walls, doors, wardrobes and electrical devices can make a huge difference to Wi-Fi speed. Restarting your devices once in a while can help you get the best connection. Turn off Wi-Fi on your device (or put it in aeroplane mode for a few seconds), then switch it back on.
Your router connection
It’s important to make sure that you leave your Router switched on and always connected. This will let us give you the fastest and most stable service, and ensure your Router is kept updated.
The time of day
Certain electrical devices can cause interference that can impact Wi-Fi performance. It's worth trying to identify if anything like a dishwasher or dryer being used corresponds to when you are experiencing problems.
We've invested heavily in the network, so everyone gets a fast connection even at the busiest times. But similar to rush-hour traffic, the speed you'll get depends partly on how many people are using the network. During peak periods, usually 8pm to 10pm, you may sometimes notice slightly slower speeds.
The UK communications regulator Ofcom uses the following definitions of speed throughout the industry:
Headline or advertised speed – This is the speed that ISPs use to describe the packages that they offer to consumers. They are often described as ‘up to’ speeds, but these are often only a guide as to the speed an ISP can provide and at what price;
Access line speed – This refers to the maximum speed of the data connection between the broadband modem and the local exchange or cable head end. This constitutes the maximum speed a consumer will be able to experience on his/her individual line;
Actual throughput (or download) speed – This is the actual speed that a consumer experiences at a particular time when they are connected to the internet. This figure is often dependent on factors such as the ISP’s network, its traffic shaping and management policy, the number of subscribers sharing the network and the number of people accessing a particular website at a particular time.
Average throughput (or download) speed – This is an average of actual throughput speed for each different broadband product offered by an ISP.