Why is my Wi-Fi network so bad?

Episode 1392

Ted from Apple Valley, CA
Netgear Orbi

Ted is having trouble with his Wi-Fi. Leo says that's not really the fault of his network so much as it's just congested from everyone else's networks and activity. Also, Ted is streaming 4K video and that takes a lot of bandwidth. It may be that Ted's ISP just isn't giving him the bandwidth he needs to consistently get a good stream. On top of that, anything they publish gets cut in half when streaming via Wi-Fi and with the congestion and the bandwidth, that's quite a challenge to overcome.

Why is the video I share on iMessage so bad?

Episode 1382

Caesar from San Bernardino, CA
Apple iOS 10

Caesar and his family all use iMessage because they all have iPhones. When he shares videos, though, the quality is terrible. Leo says that the network is trying to save bandwidth. It's better to upload the videos to YouTube and then share a link. He could also share a link via iCloud. The better solution would be to get everyone to use WhatsApp.

Why are my downloads so slow?

Episode 1354

Scott from Orange County, CA
Speed gauge

Scott is having issues with his downloads being inconsistent and slow. Leo says that ISPs usually use the phrase "up to" in their claims, and that's usually with the ideal conditions. Leo says that uploading can also slow down his internet access. How does uploading slow him down? Leo says that servers require acknowledgement that his traffic is coming through, so if he's downloading while his data is being backed up, it has to wait for its turn to upload that acknowledgement. This is why Carbonite uses very little upload bandwidth and why it takes so long to back up with it.

Is there an alternative to satellite internet?

Episode 1331

Marilyn from Compton, CA
Satellite Dish

Marilyn says that her internet carrier is trying to charge her extra for bandwidth. She uses Dish. Leo says that satellite internet has bandwidth caps because it's very constrained. Leo only recommends satellite when there's no other choice. He recommends going to They have ISP reviews by geographic area. If there's nothing else in her area, Marilyn would be much better off going with LTE wireless.

How much bandwidth do I need to stream Apple TV?

Episode 1304

Newt from Aliso Viejo, California
Apple TV

Newt is getting a new Apple TV from his son, who says it doesn't work for him. Leo says it should if he has internet. Newt says that their internet just isn't good enough to handle video streaming. He's also using up all his data. Leo says that doesn't have anything to do with Apple TV, it's just lousy internet. It's capped internet at that.

Why is internet so slow on my desktop?

Episode 1224

Che from Orlando, FL
Dell XPS 8700

Che just bought a new Dell XPS Desktop and it's started to slow down drastically. He does a speed test, like Leo taught, and the desktop is much slower than his laptop. Leo says to try plugging the desktop directly into the router with an ethernet cable, and see if the speed improves. If so, then he's narrowed it down to the router. Leo says it could the hardware, but he could try reinstalling the Wi-Fi connection. There may also be conflicting Wi-Fi drivers at work between the hardware driver and the Windows driver. That can confuse Windows and slow things down.

Why does it take so long to upload my videos to YouTube?

John from Yorba Linda, CA

Episode 1220

John records his daughter's volleyball games and he's having issues uploading the 4K video. Leo says that's not surprising. We're all uploading more, and bandwidth is usually "asymmetric" where download speeds are much faster than upload speeds. John could pay for the next tier of service. If he has Google Fiber in his area, it's symmetric which is much faster.