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Can a Broadband Speed Tester Really Tell How Fast Your Net Will Be?

Everything we do online is governed by one factor above all others - speed. Speed determines pretty much everything online and a fast connection can be the difference between getting everything done on time and falling behind. Speed is important for both businesses and personal use online, and it can be frustrating when the internet isn't living up to our expectations. Whether you're trying to stream video from YouTube, load a friend's Facebook pictures or download music from iTunes, a faster connection can get things done in no time while slower broadband providers leave you sitting around waiting for progress bars to fill up! But while everyone in the UK might want more speed, it's not always possible to just call up your provider and have them turn it up, even if you're happy to pay more for them to do so.
The results of any broadband speed tester for the vast majority of UK connections is determined not by how much you are willing to pay but by how far away you live from your local telephone exchange. The main form of broadband technology used in the UK is known as ADSL. ADSL uses the existing phone network to send data to your computer. The further that data has to travel the more it degrades and the slower your internet becomes. ADSL is an old technology and some providers in the UK such as Virgin Media and the new "BT Vision" service use fibre optic cables instead. These can provide much better speeds for consumers, but unlike phone lines it's not always possible to get connected. Fibre optic connections are available to just over half the country right now, but it's those in more rural areas that are usually left out, as placing the cables in these areas is often too costly for the return a company might get. In some cases, a fibre connection can be over ten times faster than an ADSL connection, and they don't even cost that much more money. So is speed all about where you live? Mostly, but that doesn't stop you finding out how fast your internet should be, and what kind of deal you should be looking for.
A broadband speed tester can help you determine what sort of speed you can achieve simply by checking to see your distance from your local exchange. Enter your phone number or your postcode into a service checker and it will come back with an estimate speed. These speeds aren't perfect and don't take into account every single element such as the wiring in your own home (or indeed how many people you may be sharing the internet with), but they can help you make a more informed decision. It's worth remembering that many speed checkers are only designed to check your speed through an ADSL service. If you want to check out if you can receive faster speeds through fibre optic cable, it's better to visit the website of a cable provider like BT Vision or Virgin Media and using their own testers and postcode searches to find out if you can receive these services.
Broadband Speed Tester is a consumer focused blog that answers all sort of broadband, bandwidth and speed related questions, such as "How do I test my broadband speed?" and "What sort of bandwidth is right for me?" If you ever need to know about a broadband speed test or the results, Broadband Speed Tester can help you.

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