The quick answer is that internet speed tests are concerned with bandwidth (or quantity) whereas VoIP Spear tests the quality of your internet connection. This is important because network quality is critical for real-time services (like voice, video calls, video games) over the internet.
A more detailed answer is below.
Internet speed tests are primarily concerned with bandwidth. In other words, they test the amount (or quantity) of data you can send across your internet connection.
Bandwidth is plentiful these days. My local ISP’s entry-level internet service comes with 75Mbps. This is pretty typical in North America though many service providers offer even more bandwidth. A VoIP call takes about 0.1Mbps and a Teams/Zoom call about 1.5Mbps. Thus, the entry-level service supports about 750 simultaneous VoIP calls and 50 simultaneous Teams calls/streams!
In the fast-paced industry of esports and gaming, one thing that remains constant is the need for a stable and reliable internet connection. A lag-free experience is paramount, making the monitoring of internet quality an integral but often overlooked aspect of the industry. In this post we will explore the reasons why monitoring internet quality is important for a high-end gaming experience.
In the world of online gaming, latency (the time it takes for data to travel from your device to the game server and back) can be the difference between victory and defeat. Esports and gaming require split-second responses and high latency can lead to delays in action. Continually monitoring your internet quality can help you identify latency issues. If an unwanted pattern emerges you may need to adjust router settings, troubleshoot network issues, or increase bandwidth.
A stable internet connection is as important as low latency when it comes to high-end performance. Fluctuations in packet loss and jitter can lead to an unstable internet connection and even a complete outage. Regularly monitoring your internet quality can help identify inconsistences in your connection and empower you to implement protocols that ensure your gaming experience remains uninterrupted.
An effective tool for monitoring internet quality is VoIP Spear. VoIP Spear is designed to run continually, testing network conditions every 60 seconds, over an extended period of time so you get a rich set of data back about your network. The data is then displayed for you in easy-to-read charts so you can see issues and detect patterns quickly.
VoIP Spear is also extremely quick and easy to implement. The only thing you need is your IP address so you can start monitoring your network performance in minutes.
The VoIP services market is extremely competitive. You’re focused on providing a best-in-class experience for your customers; however, the reality is that not all potential customers are an ideal fit for your service. There are varying degrees of quality to internet connections which means some customers won’t have a good experience regardless of how well-crafted your service is.
This is where the concept of using Quality of Service (QoS) monitoring tools to assess and pre-qualify customers comes into play. QoS monitoring tools measure the following:
Some customers have poor internet connections. This is out of your control meaning there’s nothing you can directly do to resolve the problem. By pre-qualifying these customers, you can gain the following benefits:
Information sent across the internet is split into small units called packets. This applies to all types of data -- email, web pages, voice calls, streaming video, etc.
Packet loss occurs when one or more packets of data are lost or fail to reach their destination. This can occur due to a variety of reasons such as network congestion, faulty hardware, or physical interference.
For a home network, packet loss can have a significant impact on the overall user experience. For instance, if packets are lost while streaming video, the video quality may become poor and may even freeze. Similarly, packet loss during online gaming can result in players experiencing lag and an overall degradation of the gaming experience. In some cases, packet loss may even cause the complete failure of a connection, resulting in a complete outage.
In this post, we explore the common reasons people have issues with their VoIP service. We also provide some troubleshooting tips and educational information about the problems and their solutions.
There are three main factors that can contribute to issues with VoIP:
Networking issues in your home or office;
Phone and voice quality; and