Is your internet fast enough to cope with your smart home needs UK?

Internet speed and smart homes

Smart home technologies have increased rapidly over the past decade. With more options than ever, it can be easy to get carried away with the possibilities. According to ONS data, the average UK home had 10.3 internet-enabled devices in 2020 – and three years on that number is likely to have increased. But are we, as a nation, paying attention to a key aspect of smart homes: our internet speed?

Many of us are probably running multiple devices at once while expecting internet connections that we installed years ago to cope with the extra load. The reality is, unless you have the bandwidth to cope with all the extra devices, you’re going to find things getting very sluggish indeed.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at which devices need faster internet speeds and when you may need to call upon a smart home WiFi installer for an upgrade.

Common smart home devices

If you’re living alone and the extent of your smart devices is limited to a couple of TVs, your smartphone and a smart thermostat, the good news is you’re probably fine. These things don’t use up an awful lot of bandwidth, and your regular connection will cope.

But in other households, especially in family homes, lots of devices are in use, some of which require a faster connection to work effectively. The biggest users of bandwidth are technologies with cameras. You might, for example, have a security system that includes a video doorbell as well as a couple of cameras positioned around your property. These alone are going to require a network speed of at least 4 Mbps to run. Ring, the prominent video doorbell provider, recommends at least 2 Mbps of bandwidth per Ring device. Otherwise, you could find everything else slows down, or your camera devices don’t work as effectively as they should.

So how fast does your connection need to be?

As a rule, it’s best to allow 10 Mbps for every broadband user in your home. So, if you have a family of four, the minimum requirement is 30-40 Mbps. For gaming or streaming 4K content, you’ll need to double the allowance to 20 Mbps per person, allowing for up to 80 Mbps collectively.

Of course, with many people working from home since the pandemic, work devices that demand faster internet speeds should be taken into account.

When choosing a broadband package, It’s also advisable to select one that will be able to accommodate more devices as you increase the amount of smart technology in your home. So, while 30 Mbps may be sufficient for now, consider if you have young children who will start using devices within the next few years, or whether you plan to add further home automation systems down the line.

If you’re looking for smart home installation in Kent, consult a reputable professional today to determine what bandwidth you’ll need before getting started.

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