How ping, jitter & latency affect your gaming experience

How ping, jitter & latency affect your gaming experience

Date: 14/03/23

Author: Anthony Harrison

Gamers often cannot agree, whether that be about which gaming console is best or what genre of game reigns superior. But what is often unanimously agreed is that ping, jitter and latency matter and can negatively impact your gaming experience. 

Ping, jitter and latency don’t only affect gaming. In fact, all are important measurements of the connection quality when streaming any media, such as video or audio. The reason hardcore and online gamers feel this issue most is because gaming requires a strong connection for both video and audio, and uploads and downloads.  

What is ping, jitter and latency?

To put it simply, all three refer to lags in your broadband speed. High rates of latency, jitter and ping shows as an inconsistent connection, glitching audio, and lagging video quality. 

  • Latency measures the amount of delay it takes to send any information from one end to another, usually measured in milliseconds (for example 30ms).
  • Jitter refers to delays in sending or receiving data packets over your network connection, usually measured in milliseconds (for example 30ms).
  • Ping is the rate at which data delay is happening, usually measured in milliseconds (for example 30ms) 

“Low ping”, “low jitter” and “low latency” is quick, whereas “high ping”, “high jitter” and “high latency” is slow, so the lower the number, the faster your connection. For instance, ping speeds under 20ms are considered exceptional, over 150ms are considered a problem, and an acceptable average sits between 50ms and 100ms. However, with Community Fibre, we’ve been known to get our customers to around 2ms (as seen in the screenshot below) 

Why is my ping, jitter and latency so high?  

There can be plenty of factors causing high ping, jitter and latency. These include:   

How can I lower my ping, jitter and latency rates?

  1. You can’t fix what you don’t know about, so test your broadband speed.
  2. Use a wired connection rather than wireless, because the latter can be affected by everything from walls to water and even other devices getting in the way.  
  3. If you can’t lessen your connected devices, increase your bandwidth
  4. Avoid old copper or combination-fibre networks which aren’t built for such high capacity activity and often slow down internet speed during peak hours to counter this. Copper is also easily damaged and slows down over time. 
  5. Choose a 100% fibre optic cable, and if you’re in London, switch to London’s largest and fastest full fibre broadband network, rated 4.9 out of 5 on Trustpilot (as of March 2023).  

Gamers don’t have to put up with ping, jitter or latency issues. Demand better with full fibre broadband for a fast, reliable and future-proof connection. Aside from achieving the best broadband speeds with symmetrical download and upload rates, fibre can also save households money as it becomes cheaper than copper-based alternatives.