What is a good internet speed for gaming?

Fezile Biyela
Internet Provider Comparisons

Online gaming has taken the world by storm, with many people making careers of becoming competitive online gamers. If you're thinking of checking out what all the hype is about and want to explore the world of gaming - one of your first questions might be, "How much internet speed do I need? 3 Mbps? 5 Mbps? More?"

There are many factors to consider when answering that questions. In this article, HomeLinkd provides a comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about online gaming, the best connection type offering the fastest internet, and top providers that can meet your gaming needs.

Read on to find out what internet connection speed you should be looking for.

Online gaming vs PC gaming: What's the difference?

When most people hear the term "online gaming," they automatically think of PC gaming. However, there is a big difference between the two. Here are some key factors that differentiate the two:

  1. Online gaming refers to playing video games via the internet with other players. This can be done on a computer, gaming console, or mobile device.
  2. PC gaming is playing video games on a computer and not necessarily on a gaming device.
  3. In online gaming, you need an internet connection to play. In PC gaming, you can play offline without an internet connection.
  4. Online gamers tend to play with strangers, while PC gamers usually play with friends or family members.

How do the two affect your internet connection?

Your internet connection needs will differ depending on whether you're playing online or PC games. Here's a quick breakdown of how each type of gaming affects your internet:

- Online gaming requires a fast and stable internet connection to avoid lag, which can ruin the gaming experience.

- PC gaming doesn't require as fast of an internet connection because you're playing offline. However, if you want to download games or updates, you'll need a decent internet speed.

Learn how to optimize your internet speed for gaming

Which uses more bandwidth, streaming or gaming?

It's a common misconception that gaming uses more bandwidth than streaming. The truth is, they both use about the same amount of data. Here's a quick breakdown of how much data each activity uses:

- Streaming video in HD quality requires a minimum of 5 - 10 Mbps.

- Streaming video in 4K quality requires a minimum of 25 Mbps.

- Online gaming only requires 5 - 10 Mbps.

But keep in mind these are just general guidelines - speed requirements can vary depending on other factors.

Want to take your gaming to the next level? Find out what the best 5 accessories & internet providers for gamers

What can affect your online gaming experience?

Aside from your internet connection, there are a few other things that can affect your online gaming experience, such as:

  • The game itself: Some games are more data-intensive than others. For example, first-person shooters tend to use more data than puzzle games.
  • The number of players: More players means more data being used.
  • The quality of the graphics: Higher-quality graphics require more data.
  • The number of users connected to your home internet: The more devices that are connected to your internet, the slower your connection will be.
  • Your connection type: Different types of internet connections offer different speeds. For example, cable internet is typically faster than satellite.

What determines a good internet speed?

There are a few factors to consider when trying to determine how fast your internet connection should be and what internet speed is good internet speed.


This is the time it takes for data to travel from your computer to the gaming server and back. The lower the latency, the better.


This is the variation in latency. A higher jitter means a more unstable connection, which can lead to lag. The lower the jitter, the better the speed and connection.

Packet loss

This is when data gets lost during transmission. Even a small amount of packet loss can ruin your gaming experience.

Ping rate

This is the time it takes for your computer to send a signal to the gaming server and back. A lower ping rate means a faster connection.

Upload and download speed

You'll need a fast, good download speed to be able to load games quickly. You'll also need a good upload speed for gaming to avoid lag - especially if you take part in multiplayer games.

How many Mbps are enough for gaming?

In general, you'll need a minimum of 5 - 10 Mbps download speed and a minimum upload speed of 1 Mbps. However, these are just general guidelines - speed requirements can also vary depending on the type of game you're playing and the number of players.

To be more specific, games such as first-person shooters (think of Call Of Duty and Halo) require a minimum of 5 - 10 Mbps, while puzzle games can get by with lower speeds. The number of players also affects the amount of data used, so you might need a higher speed if you have more players.

To get the best gaming experience, it's important to have a fast and stable internet connection. We recommend choosing a plan that has a speed of at least 25 Mbps and over for a lag-free and worry-free internet connection - especially for competitive gaming.

If there are multiple users connected to the same internet line, and they are considered heavy internet users (those who work from home, stream videos, or are also gamers), then consider a speed between 50 Mbps - 100 Mbps to ensure you don't encounter dips in your connection.

Internet connection types: Which is better for gaming?

While there are a few connection types available, we believe that fiber and cable are the best, and here's why:

Fiber internet

Fiber is the newest and fastest internet technology. It offers speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps, and up to 5,000 Mbps in some areas, which is perfect for gaming.

The main advantage of fiber is that it's very stable - meaning you won't have to deal with a lot of lag or connection issues.

Fiber is also not as susceptible to factors such as weather conditions and theft, because the data is transmitted through underground cables.

Cable internet

Cable is another good option for gaming, as it offers speeds of up to 500 Mbps.

It is widely available across the country, and also more stable than other types of internet, such as DSL and satellite internet. However, it's not as fast or stable as fiber.

Read: Fiber vs Cable: What you should consider when deciding between fiber and cable internet

Internet service providers with good internet connection for gaming

There are a few service providers that we recommend for gamers. These companies offer fast and reliable internet speeds, as well as good customer support in case you have any issues.

Some of the best providers for gaming include:


Earthlink is a nationwide ISP that offers both fiber and cable internet. They have affordable plans with speed going up to 100 Mbps.


If you're someone who requires high-speed internet, AT&T is a great option. They offer both fiber internet, with speeds of up to 5,000 Mbps in selected areas. However, their prices can be a bit higher than other providers.

Cox Communications

Cox is one of the largest ISPs in the country and also offers both cable and fiber internet. They have plans going up to 10 Mbps and affordable internet deals.

What to consider when choosing your next home internet plan

With so many options available, it can be hard to decide which internet plan is right for you. Here are a few factors to keep in mind when choosing a plan:

How much internet speed you need

The first thing to consider is how much speed you need. This will depend on the type of games you play, as well as how many people are using the internet connection.

If you're someone who plays a lot of online multiplayer games, we recommend choosing a plan that is 20 Mbps - 25 Mbps or above.

For those who play more demanding games, or if there are multiple users on the same connection, a speed between 50 Mbps to 100 Mbps should suffice.

Your download speed and upload speed

When choosing an internet plan, you should also keep in mind the download speed and upload speed. Download speed is the amount of data that you can receive from the internet, while upload speed is the amount of data that you can send to the internet. Some plans come with varying download and upload speeds. The higher the number, the faster the connection.


Price is always an important factor to consider when choosing any type of service. Internet plans can range in price, depending on the speed and type of connection. Consider how much you're willing to spend on internet to narrow down your search and find a high-speed plan that fits into your budget.

Availability of deals in your area

Another thing to consider is the availability of deals in your area. Some providers offer special discounts or promotions, which can save you a lot of money. It's also important to know whether the deal you're seeing advertised is available in your area. Some internet connection types attached to internet deals might not necessarily be available in your area. It's wise to check for deals that are available in your area so you don't end up choosing a plan that doesn't work for you.

Top tips for getting faster internet

We know slow internet speeds can be one of the worst things to experience. We understand the need for fast internet, so here are our top tips to get it:

Use an Ethernet connection instead of Wi-Fi

One of the best ways to improve your internet speed is to use an Ethernet connection instead of a Wi-Fi connection. Wi-Fi is known to be slower and less reliable than an Ethernet connection.

Place your router in a central location

Another tip is to place your router in a central location. This will ensure that the signal is strong throughout your home.

Use a mesh network

If you have a large home, you may want to consider using a mesh network. A mesh network consists of multiple access points that work together to cover a larger area.

Check for updates regularly

You should also make sure that you're regularly checking for updates for your router and modem. These updates can contain bug fixes and performance improvements that can help improve your internet speed.

Check your internet connection by running a speed test

Once you've implemented all of these tips, be sure to run a speed test to see if your internet speeds have improved. If not, you might have to consider upgrading your internet plans to get the best speed possible. We can help you do that in just a few clicks!

Get great deals on internet from HomeLinkd

Now that you know what to look for in an internet plan, head over to HomeLinkd to find the perfect one for you. We offer a wide selection of plans from all the major providers, so you're sure to find one that fits your internet needs. And, we offer great deals on some of the best plans out there - because we believe in offering you the best internet connectivity you can have.

So what are you waiting for?

Get fast internet today, and find your perfect plan on HomeLinkd.

Written by:
Fezile Biyela
Digital Writer

Hi, I’m Fez. A chai-drinking, worship-singing, and words-loving copywriter. I’m a digital native obsessed with staying connected with the world around me. That’s why you’re seeing me here – helping you stay connected. Happy reading!

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