As much as we want the internet to be fast all the time, we all know that sometimes things are a bit slow. There can be a large number of reasons for this - so this article is dedicated to helping you work out why your internet might be slow.
What causes slow internet?
A lot of the time, slow internet is simply the service at the "other" end of the connection not having enough capacity to be able to give you "fast" access to their content. Sometimes this is caused by congestion, sometimes this is caused by a high level of use, or a large number of other factors. It's always a good idea to test different types of websites (e.g. Sydney Morning Herald, Facebook, Twitter, Apple) to see if the issue is isolated or spread.
Sometimes slow internet is caused by something that is wrong with your equipment or the infrastructure that feeds your premises. For services that are provided over Telstra's copper infrastructure (e.g. ADSL, EFM or EoC) this is often the case.
Sometimes slow internet can be caused by something that is wrong with our equipment of the infrastructure within our network. When this happens, we publish status updates to our website and also on our @RealWorldOps twitter feed.
What do I do if I think I have slow internet?
A good place to start is the website http://www.speedtest.net/ - although it's worth remembering that this site is used by thousands of people from all around the world and will often give very varied results. It's a good "first test" in identifying problems.
If the speed test shows you are getting slower speed than what you would expect, or normally get, make sure you have plugged your computer directly into your modem or router, turned off WiFi and run the test again.
If you find that the service is running faster when you are plugged in, you might need to look at upgrading your router or network card. You may need to look at the position of your router, and if moving closer may improve the performance.
If you are consistently getting slow speeds, make sure you have changed your modem, removed any filters or other devices on your line and plugged your modem into the first socket in your house. Often a faulty ADSL line filter, or an alarm or other device that isn't properly filtered can cause a service to become slow or unstable ADSL service.
If you are still having slow speeds after having checked all of these things, we can work with Telstra to see if there are any issues with Telstra's infrastructure to your home or business. Telstra will usually perform some tests remotely, and if the results are "outside of specification" will send a technician to investigate and repair any damage that may be there. If you have checked all of the above, please use the form to create a support ticket in our system. Please make sure you include the details of what you have done/tried prior to creating the ticket.
What is slow?
For an ADSL service, the ACCC has determined that slow means any speed below 1.5Mbps. This translates to approximately being able to download at 130 kilobytes per second. Most ADSL services usually synchronise much faster than that today.
Unfortunately, Telstra use this determination in the case of slow speed, and while we will gladly work with you and Telstra if your service has suddenly got "much" slower than it was before, we are ultimately in their hands to resolve any issues.
If you have purchased a Copper service (such as EoC or EFM) there is a greater guarantee of speed, and we can work with you to determine what the correct speed is for your service.
All Fibre Optic Services are a guaranteed speed from you into our network, and so if you are experiencing slow speeds we can work with you to determine if it's a fault with the service that feeds you, or someone else on the internet outside of your or our control.
How quickly will my speed improve?
If you have a business grade service (EFM, EoC or Fibre) we will usually be able to resolve any issues associated with our infrastructure or the service which feeds your premises within the relevant SLA for your service.
If you have an ADSL service and the issue is inside our network or the Telstra infrastructure to your site our goal is always to resolve this as fast as we can. This usually means that most faults will be resolved within 1 - 2 business days. Depending on the type of fault, workloads within Telstra or other issues this may take longer in some cases. Our support team will keep you updated on the latest information we have.