How Much Internet Speed Do I Need for Gaming

Having a stable and reliable internet connection is one of the most important things you need to make sure when doing online gaming. Just imagine having an intense game in Fortnite when suddenly the internet starts slowing down, and the game crashes? Annoying, right? Because of this, you need to get to the bottom of your slow and unreliable connection.

Computer console controller

Several factors lead to a slow internet connection. It may be inconsistencies with the line, traffic within the ISP’s server,  weather interferences, to name a few. Regardless of the reason behind it, the important thing is that we should check our internet speed connection from time to time, especially when you want to have seamless gaming experience.

In this article, we will try to answer the question, “How Much Internet Speed Do I Need for Gaming?” It is worth noting that different tasks online requires different internet speed. With this, we will give you some insights about the required rate to achieve a lag free and seamless gaming experience.

Minimum Internet Speed

When doing online gaming, you can expect a better and more stable speed when you have a wired connection compared to a wireless one. However, a drawback with a wired connection is that it limits your portability and mobility. You need to be close to the router and be limited to the length of the Ethernet cable. Also, if you have the option; always opt for a fiber optic connection than a DSL connection. When connecting to the network, you should also limit the number of devices that are connected at the same time.

When discussing the internet speed required for online gaming, you also need to talk about the download and upload speed. The download speed is the term used to denote the rate at which data is gathered from the server while upload speed is the term used to describe the rate at which the user sends data back to the server. The minimum recommended internet speed is 3 Mbps. The download speed of the connection indicates the 3 Mbps. Most online activities, such as gaming require a faster download speed. With this, Internet Service Providers prefer to prioritize download speed for their internet packages.  You will be able to check the download and upload speed of your connection by using various speed test applications. There are several speed test sites and apps you can use over the internet.

Different gaming consoles, because of the different platforms and hardware they possess; require different internet speeds. Microsoft Xbox one requires a download speed of 3 Mbps and 0.5 Mbps for the upload speed. Nintendo Switch requires the same level of internet speed. The console requires 3 Mbps for the download speed and 1 Mbps for the upload speed.

Sony PlayStation 4, on the other hand, requires a download speed of 3 Mbps and an upload speed of 1 Mbps. Lastly, gaming on PC/Mac requires an estimated download speed of 3-6 Mbps, while the upload speed should be at 0.75 to 1 Mbps.

It is worth noting that if your internet speed is not at par with what is recommended above, you can still play whatever games you want. However, you should expect some occasional stutters and the details of the game and its visuals might load slowly. Moreover, you cannot play some games at full frame rates. With this, the game becomes more pixelated, and some features such as intricate details become blurry.

Aside from the download and upload speed, the latency of the connection is also an essential factor that can affect how the console or computer renders the game. Moreover, game performance is not as good as expected. Latency is the term used to describe the delay on how the activities within the game are relayed and when it appears on the screen. The unit used to describe latency is ping. The general premise is that if you have a higher sound, connection with other players is almost impossible and multiplayer gaming is problematic. When playing with a person that has normal ping levels than you, his actions are rendered first compared to yours. This will be an issue whenever you are in a game that is fast paced and in Role-playing games where the timing of every shot or action is essential.

How to Improve the Connection Speed

If your internet speed is up to par with what is recommended for gaming consoles and computers, there are always some means to improve the speed of the connection. Many of these have to do with some decisions before you sign up an internet plan with your internet service provider.

First off, a wired connection is more reliable compared to wireless ones. With this, you can hook up your gaming console to the wifi router via an Ethernet cable. A huge disadvantage with this is that you need to be close to the router at all times. Moreover, the length of the Ethernet cable limits your movement. Nevertheless, wired connections fare better when it comes to reliability and optimal speeds.

Another tip is to shut down any background processes that might consume your bandwidth data. Some programs and applications hog down more data compared to others. If you notice that a particular program is drinking tons of data and slows down the internet speed, you need to shut it down. However, be cautious when doing this as you might be disabling some critical system tasks. Doing this can corrupt some system data and damage the hard drive of the computer or console. Messaging apps or Streaming platforms usually hog down a lot of bandwidth. These programs are also safe to shut down.

Another tip is to maintain an unswerving network. If several devices are competing with the connection from your router, you might be placing added latency whenever you are gaming. Several methods that are running simultaneously can consume a lot of bandwidth, most notably when the other devices are used to stream movies or play games.

Tips on Streaming

While talking about online gaming, we should also be discussing some tips on streaming. This is for those gamers who want to show actual gameplay through streaming platforms such as Twitch. While the platform is open and easy to use, you need a higher internet speed to do this. The recommended internet speed for streaming games is 4 Mbps. At this internet speed, you can stream videos at a resolution of 720p.