FCC Finds That ISPs Don't Deliver Advertised Speeds

by Sam Dean - Aug. 15, 2011Comments (0)

Does your Internet Service Provider (ISP) give you the kind of performance that it advertises? The FCC has just completed a year-long study that found that many ISPs don't do so. The study involved tests performed on both download and upload speeds from many top providers. According to the Hot Hardware blog: "Most of the ISPs hit 90 percent of their advertised upload speeds, which is good, except that the reason that the upload speeds of broadband providers are always significantly lower than their download speeds is because most people are much more concerned with how long it takes for something to download than it does to upload."

Many Internet users appear to be in the dark about this issue. For example, PCMag.com does annual tests on hundreds of ISPs, measuring upload and download speeds. In its 2010 test, 71 percent of readers surveyed said that they think they are getting the speeds that their ISPs advertise.  Clearly, the findings from the FCC don't support that.

The FCC only included 13 ISPs in its tests, but they were name providers. Four of the 13 ISPs that the FCC tested averaged at or above their advertised download speeds: Charter, Comcast, Cox, and Verizon Fiber.

The PCMag.com tests are worth looking into. Verizon's Fiber Optic service was rated highest, but it's also clear that many ISPs simply don't deliver the speeds that they claim to.

As always, of course, the speed your ISP delivers is only one part of getting good performance. If you frequently use Wi-Fi and have a network, make sure to check out our post on using open source solutions to get the best performance possible. These include the very impressive Tomato Wi-Fi booster, seen in the screenshot above. 



Shailesh Patel uses OStatic to support Open Source, ask and answer questions and stay informed. What about you?




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