Plan Speeds

Speeds Explained

Your Internet speeds can be influenced by many factors and not all of them can be controlled by Uniti. We do our very best to give you plan speed as often as possible but it is not realistic to expect plan speed all day, every day.

The following can impact your speed:

  • Network congestion
  • Faulty Hardware
  • Your network
  • Content location

Network Congestion

Network congestion can happen at multiple points in the network.

The congestion could be local to you. This means you may have several people within your home or business using the Internet at the same time. This may mean that everyone within your network experiences slower speeds as you are all sharing.

Next, you may experience congestion between yourself and our core network. It is typical for an Internet provider to rely on a contention ratio. A contention ratio is the number of customers that the service provider is supporting per the plan speed provided. This is normally measured as a ratio. Common ratios used are 100:1 or higher. The drawback with contention ratios is that whilst they work for the majority of situations, if you are connected to a shared resource and several customers are all heavily using the network at the same time, your performance will likely be impacted. This is why speeds can drop during peak times. You may be thinking to yourself why don’t you just lower the contention ratio? The answer is that we do already have a relatively low contention ratio, however it is not possible to provide a 1:1 ratio at standard residential or business prices. The economics just don’t stack up. This is why customers pay a premium compared to a standard plan for a 1:1 service. To enquire about a 1:1 service, email support.

Congestion can also occur between our core network and the rest of the Internet. We pay for what is known as ‘transit’. This is what connects our network to the rest of the world so you can access content hosted in other countries. We work with several transit providers to ensure redundancy. However, we cannot always control the quality of the ‘transit’ connection they provide to us. Sometimes certain segments of their network can become congested or fail completely, just like your internal network can or our network can.

Faulty Hardware

Sometimes speed issues can be caused by the hardware devices you are using to access the Internet. You may have a device with a faulty ethernet port or WiFi chip. It could be that your device does not support the speeds that we are supplying you. You might have a faulty cable from your device to the router. It is always a good idea to test with several devices and multiple cables if possible. This helps to eliminate faulty or poor performing hardware.

Your Network

You may have routers, switches or cables in your network that are faulty or misconfigured. This is especially true for business customers who could have a complex network setup. We cannot manage or diagnose issues for your internal network. This is normally the job of a IT consultant or network administrator. If you are a residential customer this is normally you, if you are a business customer you may have an internal network administrator or you may outsource to an IT company. When connecting devices at your home or business to the wireless router’s WiFi connection, it is important to understand that speeds will likely fluctuate. This is due to the changing distance from the router and obstacles (rooms/walls/furniture/people) between you and the wireless router. Whenever you are experiencing issues with speed you should try to rule out any internal network problems before contacting us. This will help to save you a lot of time and headache.

Content Location

The content you access online from websites, apps and games all come from servers. Some servers are located overseas, some are local. Some have ample processing power, RAM and bandwidth whilst some don’t. Some might be really popular at particular times and become congested. All of these factors could influence the speeds you achieve when accessing content. Our transit partners network may also influence the speeds between you and the content server.

Speed Test

If you want to test your speed we currently recommend using the Ookla speed test tool. Please ensure that you test using a modern laptop or desktop computer that is connected to your router via ethernet cable (testing wirelessly is not a true reflection of the speed you are receiving). Try to make sure there is no other activity on your network while running the test, as this can affect speed also.

Once you have loaded the Ookla speedtest site, mouse over the triangle located under the ‘Begin Test’ button to bring up the server list. Select the ‘Internode’ server as it performs the most accurately from our experience. If you are testing during a peak period (typically between 7:00pm and 11:00pm), also try testing at a different times to make sure it is not a congestion issue. Try not to test too often either, as constant testing impacts the network and will impact speeds for other customers.

If you have followed the instructions above, have tested multiple times over different time periods and you still do not achieve plan speed, please contact support. Please provide them with your results so that they can best help you to troubleshoot the issue.