18/02/2013 12:07 | By Jon Bentley, contributor, MSN Tech
Broadband speed-checkers: a comparison

BBC iPlayer



Broadband speed-checker services tested (© Jon Bentley)
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The BBC iPlayer test site takes a slightly different approach. As well as a download test, using the common web HTTP protocol used by most checkers, there are three other tests. These use RTMP, a protocol used to stream internet video, and measure download speeds from three major content distribution networks: Akamai, Level3, and Limelight. The BBC says these tests are a more accurate reflection of the ability to stream an iPlayer programme.

I found the HTTP test usually agreed with Speedtest.net at around 63Mb and the streaming tests averaged out at a fairly consistent 17Mb. I think BBC site could be really useful if your connection is on the margins of what’s needed for good video streaming. 

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