Internet Explained: What does download and upload speed mean?

Sep 04, 2020 - Views: 6182
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Download speed test results let us know how fast the internet connection is. Understanding the test results really matters when it comes to measuring your network quality.  

Good internet performance

Good internet performance

Free internet speed tests have been a lot more common these days. 

It’s a good way to check internet performance then figure out if its speed is good enough to support our online activities. 

But have you questioned the meaning of numbers on the test results? Do you want to learn about them?

If so, then you are in the right place because right below here, MySpeed is going to explain to you basic things related to the test results. First, let’s check out the upload and download speed explained.

A speed test result

A speed test result

Some first words

For those who performed an internet speed test or even ran it multiple times, the numbers of ms (milliseconds) & Mbps (megabits per second) shown in the test results must be something quite familiar.

While ping is measured in ms, Mpbs is used to measure download speed, upload speed. 

Have you ever wondered what does download and upload speed mean? How do they affect your internet experiences?

Is upload or download speed more important for streaming?

About Mbps, is there any difference between this unit and MBps? 

Now, it’s time for us to learn about all of these questions. First, let’s learn about PING time!

What are good ping download and upload speeds?

What are good ping download and upload speeds?

Ping rate meaning

Ping rate, ping time, or also known as latency is one of the three primary results in an internet speed test. 

It’s the reaction time of the connection, measuring how quickly internet data travels from a device to another in a network & how quickly the device gets a response from the internet after it sends out a request. 

Ping is measured in milliseconds (ms).

Ping is measured in milliseconds (ms)

Ping is measured in milliseconds (ms)

The lower ping, the better

A faster ping indicates that you have a more responsive connection. 

If the speed test shows you a low number of ping, your device will take less time to receive a response. 

On the other hand, a high ping value implies that it takes more time for data to move from a device on a network to another device on another network.

Low ping is essential in gaming

Well, in online activities where timing is everything such as HD video streaming or playing games, a low ping rate is very important. 

Especially for online gamers, low latency will ensure their gaming experience is fast, smooth enough to well keep up with other gamers. 

That’s some quick explanation about ping time. Keep reading to learn about What does upload and download speed mean

What are download and upload speeds?

What are download and upload speeds?

What do upload and download speeds mean?

Right below here are some basic things to know about the meaning of upload, download speeds, which can also tell a lot about the strength and performance of an internet connection; let’s take a look. 

What does download speed mean?

Measured in Mbps, which stands for megabits per second, download speed shows how quickly you can pull or transmit data from a server on the internet to the device using your internet connection. 

This metric determines how fast our devices can load a web page, streaming video, or download files. 



A slow internet download speed means it takes more time for the device to receive digital information from the internet.

So, the higher the download speeds, the better. 

In other words, the more megabits per second (Mbps) you see in your download speed result, the stronger your internet connections. As a result, it will allow you to gain a more enjoyable internet experience when streaming videos, TV, music, playing games, video conferencing, etc.

Well, speaking of online activities requiring good downloading speed and bandwidth, streaming is often mentioned first. Why? Does streaming use upload or download speed? Well, it seems like both of them are used, but download speed is always more important for streaming. It’s worth noting that a good download speed is indispensable for enjoying streaming TV shows and movies. 

The higher the internet, the better

The higher the internet, the better

For sure, we don’t need an extremely high-speed internet connection to have an enjoyable internet experience. However, without good enough internet speed, it’s so hard for you to smoothly engage in online activities, especially when it comes to heavy activities.

What is upload speed?

Well, it is a measurement of how quickly your device can send data to the internet. This metric determines how fast you can send something via the internet such as posting videos, images on Facebook, or sending files via emails, or making video calls to talk to someone else online. 

Upload speed is also measured in megabits per second (Mbps).

Of course, the more Mbps you see in your test result, the stronger your connection is. 

Upload information and data

Upload information and data

Fast speed for uploading data will give you more enjoyable experiences when using the internet, especially when you need to send large files.  

Also, a good upload speed lets you add videos to your Youtube channel or post images to social media in less time. 

This metric also matters when you are making video calls or doing something like this. If your internet upload speeds are too slow, the quality of your video will likely be reduced that adds annoyance to your call.

Why are upload and download speeds different?

Often, the download speeds are designed to be higher than the upload speed since a large portion of online activities requires downloading rather than uploading data. 

Due to that fact, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) often give priority to download speed.

If your test result shows a difference between download and upload speeds, it’s completely normal, so you don’t need to worry about that. 

Next, let’s learn a bit about Mbps!

What is the difference between download and upload speed?

What is the difference between download and upload speed?

Mbps vs. Kbps vs. MBps: How are they different?

When it comes to “what is download speed vs upload speed”, Mbps is something that we need to discuss in detail.

In fact, Kbps, Mbps, and especially MBps look quite similar. But only Kbps and Mbps are used to measured download speeds and upload speeds. Here are the differences between Mbps, Kbps, and MBps.

Measuring upload and download speeds

Measuring upload and download speeds

Mbps - Megabits per second  

As mentioned above, Mbps stands for megabits per second - a standard measure of internet speed. A megabit is 1,000,000 bits of information. 

Bit, which can be either 0 or 1, is the basic measurement for a piece of computer data. 

When it comes to the speed or how fast the data moves across the internet, we use the units of megabits per second (equal to 1 million bits per second) and gigabits per second (equal to 1 billion bits per second).

Kbps - Kilobits per second

About kilobits per second or kbps, it is 1000 bits of information. 

Kbps is an older measure of internet speed. It is only used when needed to describe a slower connection. 

One megabit per second (Mbps) is 1000 times faster than one kilobit per second (kbps). 

Mbps vs MBps

Also, don’t be confused megabits per second (Mbps) with megabytes (MB). 

MB is a measure of file size or capacity storage rather than internet bandwidth. 

A megabit is smaller than a megabyte. To avoid confusion, it’s worth noting that MBps (MB/s) isn’t used to denote internet speed.

Fast download speed

Fast download speed


That’s all about the download and upload speeds explained as well as the meaning of ping and Mbps that we want to introduce to you via this writing. Though these terms might sound complicated at first, though, they are quite easy to understand, right? Well, that’s all for this post, we hope you find it interesting. 

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