Over the past decade, subscribers have highlighted the possibility that their Internet Service Providers (ISPs) of lowering or capping downstream and upstream speeds at numbers lower than what was originally advertised either on TV or their website. This method is commonly known as throttling. In recent days, claims have been brought to light with federal investigations disclosing that Internet companies intentionally slowed their customers service for heavy users, thus reducing bandwidth usage during heavier hours of the day. By doing this, the overall Internet performance was degraded especially when listening to music or streaming video or movies.
The president of the United States of America, Barack Obama has publicly endorsed net neutrality say their shouldn’t be any gate keepers for online services. In recent months, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved tighter net neutrality regulations, which aim to protect the openness of the Internet.
Even though steps have been taken on the federal level it still doesn’t keep Internet companies from throttling. They can slow down major content networks but they can slow down overall network traffic. Even though the FCC has stepped in with regulations, Internet throttling is still a common complaint against many cable ISPs.
How Can I Find Out If My Internet Is Being Throttled?
It is very easy to find out if your Internet Service Provider (ISP) is throttling your connection. You can run what’s known as an Internet speed test. This test will tell you the health of your Internet connection. Once the test has started, it will tell you overall time it takes for your ISP to reply to your request either upstream or downstream. If you really what to catch your ISP red handed then you want to perform a series of speed tests numerous time throughout the month. Let’s say you are watch a movie online and the images seem a little unclear then what you want to do is perform a quick test. You can also perform a test during peak hours during the morning and evening time. If you run regular tests you will get better data to use against lowering your monthly Internet bill. SpeedTest programs and websites are out there to help you. Do All Cable Companies Throttle?
If you look in your Internet Service Provider (ISP) contract you will not find anything pertaining to Internet throttling. You have to look under the section that says “performance agreement” and compare that with your Internet speed test data.
History: In 2015, CEO Brian Roberts stated the company will invest millions of dollars for infrastructure improvements and also hiring 5,500 call center representative who will be trained to assist customers. Recent speed test completed by the FCC show that XFINITY is one of the most reliable ISPs available to the public.
Time Warner Cable
History: Time Warner Cable has been a household name in the Internet Service Provider space for decades but they have also had their share of issues. They recently came under fire for throttling Youtube Videos or commonly known as buffering. Time Warner Cable or “TWC” was recently accused of violating the FCC net neutrality rules, and a new complaint filed against Time Warner Cable by a webcam operator alleges that the company was charging fees for better Internet traffic.
To address these allegations TWC has releases several press releases on their corporate blog.
History: Cox Communications is one of the most popular Internet Service Providers throughout various states in the south. The company has had a history of throttling its customers during peak hours. In the past they have even gone as far as setting limits on various broadband Internet accounts, thus pushing some users into an upgrade.
Recently, Cox Communications has started to clean its act by offering gigabit residential services to a select portion of its United States locations. This new service will give ISP users a faster connection by 100 times.
Recently, though, Cox has started offering residential gigabit services to select U.S. locations. This service is 100 times faster than the average U.S. Internet speeds, meaning subscribed customers will have fewer speed issues overall. Overall no Internet Service Provider is going to admit to throttling its customers, however, there are several things you can do to check the speed of your Internet and see if you are actually getting what you pay for.