Nowadays, a smartphone isn’t a smartphone if it doesn’t have a way to connect to a 3/4G LTE network or at least a Wi-Fi hotspot. In a previous groovyPost we explained how-to test your internet connection on your PC (as well as how-to understand what the test meant) however with so many new Android Mobile groovyReaders I thought it would be groovy to cover the steps for Android users explaining not only how to test your internet speed but also how to test its stability as well!
Note / Disclaimer: I have tried these apps on my Samsung Galaxy S I9000, but they should work just the same on any other Android device.
Speedtest.net is a simple app for your Android Mobile and very similar to the Speed Test on your PC and iPhone. With this simple app, you can test the speed of the data connection you are using, whether it’s 3g, 4g or Wi-Fi. Download the free app from the Android Market like any other app and install it. Search for Speedtest in the app drawer after installation and start it up. You will see a few simple tabs after the app is done with retrieving the server list. The first and most left orientated tab is named “Speed Test”.
After you’ve handled all the settings on the second tab, the first tab will be your main tab, with the big button that says “Start Test” and the big dial in the middle. The third tab is the one with the results, and it should be empty when you start the app for the first time. When you start the app, and the list isn’t empty, the phone that you are holding isn’t yours. Give it back.
The last tab is the “About” tab with a bunch of info about the creator of the app, www.ookla.com. So, let’s get started. Like I said above, just start the app like any other app and wait for it to retrieve the server list. It should be done within the minute. After that, press the Settings tab and modify the buttons any way you like. If you want to read the screen in kbps, Mbps or kB/s it’s your choice. Same goes for the sorting history under the “Results” tab. Done? Great. Go back to the Speed Test tab and press the big button that says Begin Test. The app starts testing your ping. It will then start the download test and last but not least the upload test. The first sign of an unstable network is a not-so-smooth-working Speedtest.net app. But if the ping is ok, mostly the download test and upload test will go ok too.
You can also use this app to determine if you placed your router correctly. Does it have antenna’s and you are getting a bad report on your app? Try adjusting the antenna’s and try again.
If adjusting the antenna’s on your WiFI router isn’t improving your speed test, you can also try to switch the Wi-Fi channels on which your Wi-Fi is working. Sometimes there is more than one Wi-Fi network in the area that operates on the same channel. With Wi-Fi Analyzer you can visualize your Wi-Fi network and determine the best channel to use. For this app, the same goes as for Speedtest.net. Download the free app from the Android Market, install it, and run it.
Within the app, you can change your access point (AP). Choose your access point and Swype through the four panels. They all show you the same info, but differently. Every page shows you the signal strength (the lesser, the better) and the channel that is the busiest. The channel with the most yellow stars is the channel that is the least crowded. Access your settings in your router according to the manual and change the channel to the correct one.
Done! With these two simple but handy apps, you should be able to ensure you’re running at your ISP advertised speeds on your WiFI device and troubleshoot things a bit as well.