What is gigabit internet speed and why you (probably) need it
Gigabit internet is 1000 Mbps and is often referred to as 1 Gbps, 1G, or 1 Gig. 1 megabit = 1 million bits of data. 1 gigabit = 1 billion bits of data. 1 megabit = 100 mbps (megabits per second).
It can be tricky to decipher all of the numbers and terms when describing internet speed options.
Do you need 100 Mbps? 500 Mbps? What about gigabit internet services?
Understanding these definitions and then learning how to apply that understanding to selecting the best internet speed for your home is important.
What’s the difference between mbps and gbps speeds?
Megabits per second, or Mbps, are a common rate at which computers can transfer or process information.
A higher Mbps rate equals a faster connection speed. 1 gigabit per second (Gbps) is a 1,000 megabits per second (Mbps) connection.
1 Gbps may be referred to as 1000 Mbps, 1G, 1 Gig or 1 Gbps.
|1 megabit||1 gigabit|
|= 1 million bits of information||= 1,000 mbps|
|= 1 million bits of data||= 1 billion bits of data|
|100 mbps (megabits per second)||1 gbps (gigabits per second)|
|= 100 million bits of data are transferred per second||= 1 billion bits of data are transferred per second|
1 megabit= 1 million bits of information
1 gigabit= 1,000 mbps
1 megabit= 1 million bits of data
1 gigabit= 1 billion bits of data
1 megabit100 mbps (megabits per second)
1 gigabit1 gbps (gigabits per second)
1 megabit= 100 million bits of data are transferred per second
1 gigabit= 1 billion bits of data are transferred per second
Internet speed basics
An internet speed such as 100 Mbps literally means that 100 million bits of data are being transferred from one machine to another in a single second or 12.5MegaBytes. Like transferring a 12megapixel photo every second.
1 gig internet gives you speeds of up to 940 Mbps, which means you can download data at a rate of 117.05 MB/second.
How do you know how many bits of information are in a common file, such as a YouTube video or an episode of your favorite Netflix show?
As an example, say you wanted to download a 2 hour HD film.
The typical movie file size is 2 gigabits and if you had a 50 Mbps internet connection, you could download that movie in 40 minutes.
The faster your internet connection, the faster you can download information to the device or machine you are using.
What are the benefits of gigabit internet?
One of the advantages of gigabit and gigabit+ speed is that everyone in your household can do what they want at the same time. Play a video game, video chat, or stream a favorite show—and still enjoy fast speeds.
Whether you’re in an apartment or even a larger household, gigabit and gigabit+ speeds offer an ultrafast connection, supporting more advanced devices and heavier internet use.
For Astound Broadband customers, that’s what’s most important – reliable, fast speed you can count on.
We offer the latest DOCSIS 3.1 technology so you can reach the max speed your devices are capable of.
We’ve got you covered when it comes to supplying equipment that passes gigabit+ speeds:
- 2.5GE (Multi-Gig Ethernet) ports are newer types of Ethernet ports used on some modems and routers.
- 2.5GE ports support higher connection speeds than the Gigabit Ethernet ports previously used on most devices.
While Astound Broadband will provide you with a modem/router capable of handling gigabit+ speeds, you may need to update some of your home devices with newer generation models to get the full benefit.
How to get the most out of Gigabit Internet
When you have Gigabit or Gigabit+ internet speeds, you probably want to go fast.
Gigabit speeds are so fast that most devices weren’t built to take advantage of it.
While you’ll get fast, reliable internet in your home and devices, we can help you learn how to get the fastest internet speeds possible and how faster speeds can benefit you.
The speed you see on your device in a speed test will be based on the speeds that you’re able to get through:
- Your device (and its operating system’s ability to support fast ports).
- Your cables
- Your Ethernet adapter or port.
- The USB port you’re connecting into.
Optimize your WiFi speed
Using an Ethernet connection to connect your device directly to the internet allows you to get a faster and more stable internet connection than you’d get over WiFi.
In order to get the fastest speeds possible, plug your device into your router directly using an Ethernet cable.
Use an Ethernet cable
If you’re connecting this way, make sure your Ethernet cable is Cat6 or greater (‘Cat’ is short for category, and if you’re not sure what type yours is, you’ll usually see this information printed on the side of the cable. You can also use Cat 6A, 7, etc).
Cat5e cables may not be able to reach gigabit+ speeds.
You can, of course, use the Cat 5e you have to get a connection—you just won’t get the fastest speeds available.
Use a 2.5G Ethernet adapter for wired connections
If your device doesn’t have a built-in 2.5 Gb Ethernet port or faster (this is currently rare on laptops, but available as an upgradable component on desktop computers), you’ll need an adapter—also known as a dongle—rated at 2.5 Gb or faster.
Most devices (e.g. gaming, laptops) max out at 1Gbps.
If you’d like to reach gigabit+ wired speeds, you may want to try using a dongle enabling speeds greater than 1 gigabit.
What equipment do you need for gig internet?
Internet speed is important to keep you connected, but if you don’t have the right router or modem, you won’t be getting the most out of your internet experience.
DOCSIS 3.1 internet modems are the most recommended model for high speed internet connectivity.
It’s important to note that you will need compatible equipment in order to get the gig speeds you pay for.
Not sure if you’re getting the speeds your need? Test your internet speeds.
Mesh WiFi router
With a single router you can access the internet, but often only in rooms that are close to where the router is located.
This is because the further you are away form the router the weaker your WiFi signal may be.
A Mesh WiFi system, along with advancements in WiFi technology such as WiFi 6 and WiFi 6E provides fast a reliable gig internet speeds throughout your home.
Gaming WiFi router
Computers, laptops, tablets, phones, smart devices (HVAC controls, lights, video cameras, etc), and even streaming your favorite shows all take a a chunk out of your total bandwidth.
But what if you’re playing your favorite game online?
Going beyond regular WiFi routers, a gaming router let’s you prioritize how your bandwidth is allocated to maximize your performance and improve your gameplay.
About Gigabit speeds from Astound Broadband
With 1 gigabit or 1.2 gigabit speed from Astound Broadband, you can get downloads of 1 gigabit per second or more using a wired connection as long as your cables, ports, and device are capable of the speeds.
- Using a WiFi 6e router with your gigabit or gigabit+, you can get excellent WiFi speeds and coverage across your home. Of course, exact speeds will vary based on the devices you’re using, and a few other factors.
- For now, if you’re looking for information about how to get the maximum speeds with Astound Broadband.
Do I Need 1200 Mbps Internet?
1.2 Gigabits per second (Gbps) is 1200 megabits per second (Mbps) Internet connection. 1200 Mbps may be referred to as 1.2G, or, 1.2 GIG.
What Is Fiber Internet?
There are many benefits of fiber internet, including increased speeds, greater reliability, no throttling, and excellent online gaming.
Symmetrical vs Asymmetrical
While Symmetric internet has equal download and upload speeds, asymmetric internet has faster download than upload speeds
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*Internet download speeds may vary and are not guaranteed. Certain equipment may be required to receive advertised speeds. Observed speeds may vary based on device connection & other factors outside of Astound’s control. All advertised speeds are up to the stated speeds and are not guaranteed; speed may vary due to conditions outside of network control, including customer location, sites accessed, number of devices connected, customer usage, customer equipment and computer configuration, the level of overall traffic, and customer compliance with Astound usage policies set forth in the acceptable usage policy. See astound.com/yourspeed for why speeds may vary. Our FCC Network Management Disclosure makes available information regarding our network management practices and the performance and commercial terms of our Internet access services to enable you to make informed choices regarding the purchase and use of our services, in accordance with Part 8 of the Rules of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Modem required for internet service. We substantiate that the cable modem equipment provided, and the configuration of such cable modem, meets the broadband speeds advertised when attached to a wired connection based on SamKnows testing procedures.
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