Symmetrical Speeds: What Are They and Why You Need Them

There’s a lot to love about fiber Internet, but one of its biggest advantages isn’t always well understood – symmetrical speeds. Symmetrical upload and download speeds aren’t all that common, especially among the big broadband cable providers.

But what are symmetrical speeds, and why are they so important?

In a nutshell, “symmetrical speeds” means that your download bandwidth and your upload bandwidth is the same. On our fastest Gigabit plan, that means you get 1,000 Mbps up and 1,000 Mbps down. In comparison, the nation’s biggest broadband provider only doles out a paltry 35 Mbps up on their Gigabit plan.

Providers typically advertise their download speeds, and it’s easy to see why. Most devices and applications are pulling things down from the Internet to support your applications and devices. Installing and running apps and games, streaming movies and music, surfing the Internet — all these things depend on good download speeds to dr information online to your device.
Some things, though, require pushing data up to the Internet.

Ever sat and waited … and waited … for a batch of photos to upload to a shared folder or a printing service?

Ever struggled through a meeting via videoconferencing when your boss or your customer is a glitchy, garbled mess?
Your upload speed was likely to blame.

If you’re working or going to school from home or sharing files and photos, upload speeds are critical. They boost video conferencing quality, reduce the time to upload files, and improve cloud-based applications and backup services like Google Drive, Dropbox, and iCloud.

Every time you share or send information over the Internet or use a cloud-based application, upload speeds are involved. The faster the upload speeds, the less time it takes to send that data. Beyond that, upload speeds are an essential part of your smart home security.

Take, for example, cloud-based technology like wireless smart home security cameras. They’re small, capable of 4K resolution, inexpensive, easy to set up, and they’re quickly becoming ubiquitous — but they’re also upload speed hogs. A popular feature of these devices is the ability to stream what they capture so you can watch while you’re away from home, which requires … upload speeds. The most popular brands on the market (Nest, Wyze, Ring, Arlo, Blink) all have hefty minimum upload speed requirements, and that’s just for standard definition (SD) streaming. If you want to stream a camera feed in high definition (HD) or 4K, those requirements only increase.

With GoNetspeed’s fast fiber Internet, even our basic tier of service (150 Mbps) is going to crush the requirements for the neediest smart home security camera. The same can’t be said for the nation’s biggest broadband provider — their first three plans offer 25 Mbps down/3 Mbps up, 100 Mbps down/5 Mbps up, and 200 Mbps down/5 Mbps up. That barely covers the minimum upload speed requirement for SD streaming no matter what wireless smart home security camera you choose. And forget about HD. Oh, and good luck finding the upload speeds for that broadband provider we’ve been talking about. They bury that information because they know those speeds are terrible. Entire articles have been written on the subterfuge.

That’s the beautiful thing about symmetrical speeds – they are transparent. You know what you’re getting, and you know what you’re getting is good, especially when you pair it with a mesh WiFi system like the Nokia Beacon that GoNetspeed uses. With a mesh WiFi system, you can increase your WiFi footprint, create a larger coverage area in your home and take advantage of the top speeds – download and upload – that fiber Internet can provide.

For faster file sharing, better videoconferencing and all the online gaming and streaming in between, check your address or get in touch with our super-friendly Customer Service team to get started today.