Myths and Truths about broadband connections for gaming

Broadband connections can get a little confusing especially when you’re not a techie. Generally, people don’t bother about the kind of internet services they have. They just sign up for the connection and are satisfied with the way it is.

It turns out that the matter is so extensively technical, it requires an understanding of the broadband connection you have and the way it affects your online gaming.

You might have heard different myths and truths about the broadband connection for gaming. Thankfully, we are here to separate all the known myths from facts!

No matter whether you have Spectrum, Mediacom, or Cox Internet, here is what you ought to know:

You need blazing-fast speeds and Bandwidth for Online Gaming

Fact or Myth? Many people are under the assumption that they need a cosmic ultra-fast internet to be able to game properly. However, this isn’t necessarily the case as there are other factors involved. I’m not denying the importance but it largely depends upon the number of devices connected to the internet at one time.

To make everything simple, let’s break down what bandwidth generally is. Bandwidth is the amount of data that can be transferred over by your internet at a certain time. Therefore, it is the maximum amount of data that can be transferred by the internet to your console and back again at any given time.

Therefore, you might be thinking that more bandwidth means faster internet, right.

Well, not necessarily, as more bandwidth means that your broadband connection can handle multiple devices at a time.

To your surprise, gaming usually requires not more than 0.1MB. As long as you are just gaming, with this bandwidth, you won’t experience a lag. However, at the same time, if someone in your house is indulged in high-definition streaming on Netflix or Hulu, you will experience a considerable lag.

This is because streaming requires more bandwidth and the other activities suffer as a result. Hence, this is a myth!

Gaming Consumes a lot of Data!

Many internet service providers have data caps in place. This leaves many users, especially gamers, in deep distress as they charge customers for data usage that exceeds the limit.

Surprisingly, if you are a gamer and on a limited data plan, you don’t need to worry about anything. Gaming requires very little data and takes up very limited bandwidth. This means that more than one person in your household can enjoy online gaming at a time and gameplay will still be smooth.

The only thing you should be concerned about is downloading and streaming. As we discussed earlier, streaming your favorite shows on Netflix or Amazon Prime requires a lot of data and can hamper your gaming experience.

Therefore, you don’t need to get extra data especially when you are only concerned about gaming.

The type of Internet Connection affects your gaming experience

Having a wired or wireless connection or the type of internet connection inside your home will affect your gaming speeds. Therefore, we need to understand separately how these connections work. Normally, you get internet through cable, DSL, fiber, or satellite.

DSL

DSL internet uses phone lines to provide internet services and utilizes different frequencies for the internet and phone so you can use both at the same time. DSL offers slower speeds as compared to the other internet connections. You can get somewhere between 1 Mbps to 6 Mbps. Speeds like these are suitable for basic browsing, emails, and standard streaming.

You can do online gaming with DSL internet provided that only one device is connected with broadband.

Cable  

Cable internet services use coaxial wires to deliver high-speed internet. The cable is undoubtedly faster than DSL and can get you up to 300 Mbps internet. This blazing fast speed might be a little extra for an average household with one or two gaming consoles. However, with multiple devices connected, 50-100 Mbps plans are sufficient.

Fiber

Welcome to the future. It uses light fiber optics transmitting data faster and efficiently than the old school copper wires. This is a relatively new technology and is not widely available.

Generally, two types of fiber optic broadbands are offered.

The most common type is Fiber-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC). This method uses fiber optic cables to a point called green box out of which regular copper wires deliver broadband to your home.  With the addition of copper wires, the internet speeds are inconsistent and are largely dependent on your distance from the green cabinet. The upload speeds are lower than the download usually.

The second type is Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) and as the name indicates, it gets the optic cables to your home. FTTP does not require copper wiring and broadband speeds are quite symmetric. You get the same download and upload speeds up to 900 Mbps.

How does this affect your online gaming experience? The unreliability involved with the FTTC makes it redundant for online gaming especially when your internet connection drops out when you are 1vs1 in a battle royal mode.

Wired Internet Connection is suitable for gaming

Using your Wi-Fi for online gaming is a cardinal sin for gamers. Although the Wi-Fi routers have improved over time, you cannot deny the importance of a wired connection.

A wired connection requires a physical wire, which we call an Ethernet Cable, a crossover cable, and a hub. This might sound an outdated technology but to be honest, it offers reliability, speed, and consistency.

Lag is a curse that cannot be broken

Latency is the delay taken by the traffic from your console to reach the destination. It is commonly referred to as ping in the gaming world. Internet quality is a lot more than just raw bandwidth. Latency is the key factor for games that involves a quick and rapid response from the server. It can be caused by a variety of factors including hardware or software issues with your connection.

However, internet lag is mainly due to the route taken by your ISP to reach the gaming server. You get a faster game response if the route is optimal. Since the internet isn’t solely built for your Call of Duties or Fortnite, your broadband encounters congestion along the way.

This can be fixed quite easily. A better internet provider can get you reduced latency, better stability, and faster speeds.

Final Verdict

I hope that this myth-busting article would have cleared all the misconceptions you had about broadband connection for online gaming. Every second count in a Battle Royal or multi-players, therefore invest in a good internet provider.

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