Tip for Tuesday: Internet Speeds

The internet. One of the most important features of modern-day life, and at the same time potentially one of the most infuriating if it goes wrong. This becomes very apparent when working as an online English teacher as your whole work life becomes dependent on a good internet connection. To ensure that lessons flow properly and to maintain a high level of professionalism, IQBar has set a minimum internet speed of download 20 mbps and upload 5 mbps. But what does that mean? In this week’s #TipForTuesday we take a look at internet speeds, jitters, and everything else you need to know about the internet whilst working at IQBar.

Internet download and upload speeds

IQBar has set minimum download speeds of 20mbps and upload speeds 5mbps as these provide the baseline for a good network service. But what do these terms mean? In layman terms, download speeds are the rate in which the information can be downloaded to your device from the server.

The upload speed on the other hand, is how quickly it takes to upload files such as uploading an email, sending a file or using video chat.

Both of these are highly important, but in the context of IQBar, during a session we are primarily downloading information. For this reason download speed is much higher than upload.

What is a jitter?

Sometimes you may get a message appear saying the network is experiencing a jitter and either you can’t access the classroom for a few seconds, or in a worse-case scenario it kicks you out completely and you have to reenter – but, what is it? Information that moves between your device and the server comes in little chunks called packets. If the movement of these packets gets too slow, or there is a disruption, than this causes a ‘jitter’. These can be caused by a slow internet connection and are particularly difficult for video calls, like we use in the classroom. These

So, what can you do to stop jitters occurring?

What is clearing cache?

Often the IT team will tell you to ‘clear your cache’ if you’re having an issue with the website. But what is this cache you’re meant to clear?

Well a cache is a saved version of the website, so if you return to a website, everything that was loaded the first time is stored there as a memory so it doesn’t have to load everything from the beginning again. Sometimes a cache can become corrupted, so if you are asked to clear cache it means clearing all these memories of websites. It doesn’t change anything about how your system works however, or any of your saved websites, bookmarks or history.

Vimm’s blog post offers easy to follow instructions.

What do I do if my internet goes down?

If your internet goes down, it is your responsibility to have a back-up. If you have to cancel due to a wifi issue you will be fined as you should always have a plan. Make sure you have enough 4G on your phone to use as a hotspot or an alternative place to teach if you are unable to at home.

IQBar has its own speedtest for Buddies to make sure their internet speeds are high enough. You can find the test here.

If you are on the move and want to take work with you, it is your responsibility to make sure your new location will have a strong enough connection.

We hope this has been useful! The internet can be a confusing place so if you have any questions surrounding IQBar and the internet, please don’t hesitate to contact one of the team. You can also watch Kyle’s latest vlog going over how to deal with the internet too, here.