Your internet speed is impacted by a variety of factors. Some of these include your Internet Service Provider (ISP), the condition of your cable lines, how many devices you connect to the network, your modem, and router, and the activities that you use your connected devices for.
For example, streaming high-quality videos or online gaming require more bandwidth than simply checking your email or scrolling through social media feeds. Depending on your household needs you may find that your current speed isn’t keeping up with the demands of all your connected devices.
To determine what internet speeds you need, make a list of all the devices in your home including laptops, desktops, smartphones, gaming consoles, smart TVs, etc. Now, how many of those devices are you operating at one time? In our current environment, you may be working from home, attending video meetings, and watching webinars. At the same time your children might be streaming or virtually participating in school classes.
To get into some technical terms…download speeds of 100 Mbps and upload speed of 10 Mbps upload is generally good for 5-7 connected devices. Download speed of 200 Mbps and upload speeds of 20 Mbps should cover 8-10 devices. But to simplify, your local internet provider or your security installer can help you choose the right plan for the number of devices in your home.
To be smart home ready, remember to include the number of WiFi connected smart home devices like security cameras or video doorbells in that number.
How do I run a speed test?
Not sure what internet speed you currently have? Run a simple speed test. To run a speed test you can go to Google.com and search for “speed test” or use Ookla’s Speedtest tool that is available for free online or as free app download.
Check with your Internet Service Provider to make sure that the internet speeds you are getting in test results match with the plan you are paying for. It’s best to check the speeds using a device wired directly to the modem or router with all programs closed for the truest results. If you’re using WiFi, the distance from the router and the number of other devices can have a direct impact on the speed test.
What internet speed do I need for WiFi cameras?
According to Alarm.com, you will need at least 2 Mbps upload speed per video camera that you plan to add on to your network. This means if you have 4 cameras you will need at least 8 Mbps upload speed to view your live feeds and for the cameras to connect properly with your security panel or smart home hub.
How do my z-wave devices interact with my WiFi?
Z-wave is a different frequency than WiFi, therefor your z-wave devices have no impact on your WiFi speeds. However, your smart home security panel that serves as the hub for these devices will need to be connected to your home WiFi.
Your Internet speed will not be impacted by devices that communicate through Z-Wave frequencies; these include devices like locks, lights, thermostats, smart plugs, motion sensors, contact sensors, and a variety of other devices.
What if I’m experiencing slow Internet speeds?
The first thing you should do is make sure you aren’t running an ongoing download or are on a video chat as these might be using bandwidth resources. If you aren’t running any bandwidth intensive programs, try rebooting your devices, modem, and router. Run the test again to see if your speed improved.
If you are still experiencing slow speeds you should contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Sometimes they need to adjust settings on their end to ensure the correct internet speed is being delivered to your home.
Do you want to make your smart home smarter? Or are you just getting started by thinking about how you might benefit from a smart home? Our security professionals can help you decide which features and technology is right for your and get it professionally installed! Contact Select SmartHome today to start exploring your options or check out our custom smart home builder online.