If you are on a capped broadband tariff there are two things that may slow you down when using the Internet.
Exceeding your broadband allowance
In days gone by if you had a broadband contract that had caps on the amount of data you could download, and you exceeded that allowance during the month, the ISP usually stopped your access for the remainder of the month. These days ISP’s no longer cut access off entirely, but instead cut down the speed dramatically.
Most ISP’s have some sort of online usage monitor, so it is always wise to keep an eye on it to make sure you aren’t using too much data, especially if you have been downloading music or videos which consume large amounts of bandwidth.
You can install a program on to your PC that monitors your internet usage, however we don’t really recommend these as they will only monitor the usage for the PC, these days with the proliferation of multiple connected devices such as tablets, laptops, and phones it’s likely that you will have multiple drains on your bandwidth.
As ISP’s have become more sophisticated they are able to detect what type of Internet usage their customers are engaging in, and are able to restrict speeds of users engaging in activities that the ISP disapproves of, the major ones being the use of file sharing and Torrent sites.
If you are using these types of sites it’s probably best to leave your downloads running overnight when your ISP is quieter, and less likely to engage in Traffic Shaping. Another alternative is to use a VPN such as Hotspot Shield VPN (www.hotspotshield.com) that will mask the source of your traffic from your ISP.