Rich Media Requires Robust Internet Connections

Written by on August 30, 2012 in Technology - No comments | Print this page

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Internet Connection

Pinterest is one of a growing number of websites that use a lot of flashy images and videos. Like most sites that use rich media, Pinterest uses up a lot of bandwidth. Without high speed Internet, Pinterest and similar sites load very slowly and this can be frustrating for users.

 

Any Internet provider can give you an Internet connection, but using sites such as Pinterest can really show just how slow your speeds are.

One medium quality picture averages anywhere from 20 to 200 kilobytes (KB) of data. High quality photos can easily be 1-5 megabytes (MB). Because of the way Internet speed is measured, it can be difficult to gauge just how fast your Internet service would need to be to regularly view hundreds of different quality photos with little delay. In short, Internet speed is measured in bits and there are 8 bits in one byte.

Most high speed Internet providers have a 1 Mbps, 5 Mbps, and up to 20 Mbps packages available. However, your Internet provider will likely have a better list of connection speeds available in your area. Some extremely rare areas are even equipped to handle speeds up to 100 Mbps. But, remember that bandwidth speed is measured in bits, while most rich media files are measured in bytes.

For example, the 1 Mbps package would allow you to optimally handle 128 KB of data per second. This means that a 200 KB photo would take a little over one second to load, but an extremely high quality photo could take 10 seconds to load.

Considering that Pinterest uses so many of these photos at once and it’s easy to see why higher speeds are necessary for repeated use of the site. The homepage on Pinterest can easily contain a hundred photos at any given time. If each photo is presumed to be of average quality at 50 KB, one hundred photos could only take a minute on a high speed connection.

On any lower speed connection that could easily mean five minutes of waiting to fully load one page. This can load even slower if you’re also trying to load a video on Youtube, or do online banking at the same time as you update your virus protection. As there are a growing number of sites that have rich media on all of their pages, it is a better idea to have a higher speed Internet service than to have a slower service.

This is a guest post. Eric Kuhn is an expert in the field of high speed and wireless Internet connections.

Image by suphakit73: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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