Google Stadia’s internet speed requirements are just the beginning

Google Stadia on Thursday unveiled its pricing and some of the video games you can play on its all-new service set to launch in 2020. The company also offered up some guidelines as to the types of network speed requirements it has for various qualities of gameplay: 10Mbps  for 720/60fps stereo, roughly 20Mbps for 1080/60fps HDR with 5.1 surround audio, and 35Mbps for 4K/60fps HDR video with 5.1 surround.

That’s all well and good, but don’t assume that meeting Google’s internet speed requirements means you’ll be able to play at the stated quality. They’re the minimum, but not necessarily sufficient, conditions.

Google — like many of the PC cloud-gaming services — doesn’t mention the other, more important issues that usually affect your experience as exemplified by Nadia Oxford’s tweet: the network. If you’re getting potato streaming, then local network congestion is what’s mashing it.

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

Think of it as being able to drive 75 mph on the highway, but then you hit the city and your speed unavoidably drops to an average of 25 mph. That number encompasses a lot of stop and go. While these services will test your network, and even in some cases include jitter and other types of network latency data in its calculations, like stop-and-go traffic it can bottleneck by surprise at any moment. And none of it even factors in a given device’s connection stability.

In other words, even if you’re getting 500Mbps with no latency when Google checks your network, at any point while you’re playing, the entire block may start streaming some random playoff game in 4K HDR and those packets interweave with your game packets, interrupting how smoothly they’re flowing. Google fails to lay out any of the details, such as maximum jitter and latency, that you’d want to see before plopping down your $130/£119 for a Founder’s Edition preorder.

When latency rises, frames and frame-rates drop, audio stutters, image quality degrades visibly, your trigger pull registers a millisecond too late and you end up dead in a puddle of your own blood while screaming at the cats in frustration. (OK, maybe that last one’s just me.)

While Google has an advantage over many competitors in that it owns a lot of the network infrastructure between its game-hosting cloud servers and the edge servers which are the last point of delivery between Google and your internet service provider or cellular carrier. But there’s only so much it can do to optimize packet delivery once they leave your ISP. And while many of these services have algorithms to gracefully fall back to lower levels when network issues arise, but that’s not always executed well.

And none of this even includes the irritation of excitedly trying to launch a game, only to be told that your network isn’t up to snuff at the moment — bandwidth great but too much jitter, please try again later. I participated in the Project Stream Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey trial. The first time I ran it, it was great. The second time, unplayable. Both times Speedtest told me I had more than enough bandwidth. And that problem’s not limited to Google.

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New Mac Pro makes its debut: The long-awaited update to Apple’s flagship desktop starts at $5,999, available in the fall.

[“source=cnet”]

India Now Ranks 67th Globally in Fixed Broadband Speed, 109th in Mobile Internet Speed: Ookla

India Now Ranks 67th Globally in Fixed Broadband Speed, 109th in Mobile Internet Speed: Ookla

HIGHLIGHTS

  • India’s performance in fixed broadband speeds has significantly gone up
  • Norway, Singapore at pole positions for mobile and fixed broadband speed
  • India’s average fixed broadband speed in February was 20.72 Mbps

Fixed broadband download speeds in India have gone up significantly has it now ranks 67th, up from 76th in November, as per February data from Ookla’s Speedtest Global Index. However, the country is still at the 109th in terms of mobile Internet speeds, globally. As per the report, India’s performance in fixed broadband download speeds has gone up from average speeds of 18.82Mbps in November 2017to 20.72Mbps in February 2018.

“India had reported most improvement in fixed broadband download speeds among the world’s most populous countries. The country captured the second slot in terms of showing the most improvement in mobile data speeds,” Ookla said in a release announcing the results. It added, “While India’s rank in terms of mobile Internet download speed remains same at 109th but average download speeds have risen to 9.01Mbps in February from 8.80Mbps in November last year.”

Meanwhile, according to the index, Norway was at the pole position in the world for mobile Internet with an average download speed of 62.07Mbps. The global average download speed was 22.16Mbps. When it comes to India, it still lags behind a neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka. Additionally, in terms of fixed broadband speeds, Singapore took the top spot a 161.53Mbps average download speed. For fixed broadband speeds, the global average was recorded as 42.71Mbps.

Ookla’s Speedtest Global Index compares Internet speed data from around the world via 7,021 servers, out of which 439 are present in India.

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

6 WordPress Plugins That Will Speed up Your Site

6 WordPress Plugins That Will Speed up Your Site

With all the hard work that you put into building your website, do you know the one thing that can kill it before it even has a chance?

Speed.

Loading speed is essential to your site’s success.

Think about it. How long are you willing to wait for a site to load before you decide to just move onto the next one?

Not long, right?

Most visitors to your site are only willing to wait a matter of seconds for your site to load before they decide it isn’t worth the effort and escape out, back to Google, where they will eventually make their way to your competition.

Speaking of Google, the search engine includes your loading speed in its search algorithms. The faster your site, the better your ranking. (Here’s a great podcaston the subject)

Does a slow loading site equate disaster? Well, it can, but only if you choose not to do anything about it. We have the workaround you need.

WordPress Plugins.

These plugins are designed to increase the load speed of your page through a variety of mechanisms. Which one you need depends greatly on the structure, design, and reach of your page.

There are plugins for extremely high traffic sites, plugins for image heavy sites, and every need you might have in between.

To help you narrow down which WordPress plugin is best for your site, we have narrowed down some of our favorites, each filling a slightly different focus.

Here is our list of chart-topper, speed-inducing plugins.

1. Faster Rendering: WP Fastest Cache

WP Fastest Cache Comparison

Looking for a plugin that is fast, intuitive and after 3 million downloads, still maintains a five-star review?

WP Fastest Cache is your answer.

You have put in hard work on your site and now you are generating tons of views. This is great.

Except the heavier the traffic flow is generated to your site; the more RAM and CPU is used and this means only one thing.

Slow rendering.

WP Fastest Cache creates a static HTML file, so that multiple users reach the same static page rather than having the page render repeatedly.

Looking at the 5-star reviews this plug in receives, user site speed, functionality and ease of use among the top features.

More than 400,000 active installations can’t be wrong.

The only downside? To take full advantage of all the features will require a premium version.

2. Caching: W3 Total Cache

W3 Total Cache

If you’re looking for a free web caching option, W3 Total Cache is the most advanced plugin for web performance optimization to date.

This plugin is one of the most respected and recommended WPO frameworks by major web developers and web host. Plus, it has gained the trust of big business names like AT&T and Mashable.

Impressive. But, is W3 Total Cache the right plugin for your needs?

This plugin will do a lot for you. The website boasts perks such as

  • At least 10x improvement in overall site performance.
  • Improvements in conversion rates.
  • Improvements in search engine rankings.
  • Up to 80 percent bandwidth savings.

And, that is just the tip of the cache iceberg.

W3 Total Cache is a big-time plugin with a monstrous number of features. For high volume, high traffic sites, a plugin with these capabilities is essential.

On the other hand, the complexity of this plugin doesn’t make it = user-friendly to the uninitiated and its intended audience is experts in the field. The features can be overwhelming and, honestly, too complicated for the small-time user.

3. Compressing JavaScript & CSS Files: WP Super Minify

WP Super Minify

WP Super Minify, with 20,000 active installations, combines and compresses HTML, JavaScript, and CSS files to reduce the time it takes your website to load.

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The three-step process for installing this plugin include downloading the plugin, uploading it to the directory and activating it through the plugins menu.

The process really couldn’t be any simpler or foolproof.

WP Super Minify won’t increase Google page speed as much as some of the more technical plugins, however, many users can expect an increase of 2-4 percent.

Not too bad for an easy and intuitive plugin.

4. Reducing Image Size: WP Smush

WP Smush It

WP Smush is an award-winning, image compression plugin.

Every image on your site can increase page load time. In the past, the only real way around this was by compromising image quality. With WP Smush, every image is compressed so that the overall size is decreased, yet the integrity and quality of the image remain intact.

What are some of the perks of WP Smush?

  • It supports all common image formats including JPEG, GIF, and PNG.
  • Removes unused colors from images.
  • It is compatible with other plugins.
  • Compresses any image in your directory.
  • Removes metadata from JPEG images.
  • Multiple images to compress? No problem. W3 Smush handles up to 50 at a time.

WP Smush is the go-to plugin for image optimization.

5. Decreasing Pageload: BJ Lazy Load

BJ Lazy Load Options

When a user enters your site, all the content on the page is automatically loaded. No matter how much content there is.

What if your page is large, or contains many images? Loading time is naturally going to be slower.

BJ Lazy Load has the solution.

When this plugin is installed, your page no longer loads all at once.

Isn’t this a bad thing?

Not at all.

Rather than loading content that the viewer is not ready to access, BJ Lazy Load delays loading it until the user is ready.

For example, let’s say you have a long page and lots of written content filled with images. Obviously this isn’t a quick browse.

As the viewer scrolls along, content iframes are replaced with placeholders so that the page loads bit by bit, rather than all at once. The visitor won’t notice this, and that’s exactly the point.

6. Optimizing the Database: WP-Optimize

WP Optimize

Running a WordPress site and/or blog can lead to a highly inefficient database.

Every time a new page or post is saved, WordPress creates a revision of that post or page. So, if you edit a post 6 times (as I’ve done so far with this post) there might be 5 copies of this post as revisions.

As you can imagine, this quickly adds data to the database table resulting in unnecessarily bloat and slower access.

In other cases, a large blog might have thousands of spam or un-approved comments saved in their tables, causing further inefficiencies.

In short, WP-Optimize allows you to clean up and optimize your database to make it run better. You can also remove all those post revisions and comments automatically to ensure your database is running neat, fast, and efficient.

Once enabled, you can define a schedule which will automatically clean-up your database by removing all unnecessary data like spam comments, trashed content, etc., compact/de-fragment your MySQL tables, show database statistics and potential savings and more.

What Are You Waiting For?

Once upon a time, WordPress was viewed as a platform for the blogging niche. Over time it has evolved into a highly functional content management system that can be used to create any type of website.

We want your site to reach its potential. This can only be achieved when it is fully optimized for speed and usability. These WordPress plugins help your site to appear professional and user-friendly, two factors you need for success.

Downloading is easy, and you need at least one of these plugins right now. Don’t wait.

Increase your speed and start optimizing traffic today.

[“Source-searchenginejournal”]

 

Sony Xperia XZ Premium reaches 750Mbps download speed over EE’s LTE network

Earlier this year, the Snapdragon 835 powered a mobile router that clocked 930Mbps download speed. The Sony Xperia XZ Premium is based on the same chipset and it reached 750Mbps in “real-world test conditions” – specifically EE’s LTE network at Wembley Stadium in London.

The test put the one of a kind screen to good use by streaming The Grand Tour in 4K HDR (from Amazon Prime). Other things that the Sony team tried out was to download high quality music for offline listening and downloading “humongous” files from Google Drive.

Sony Xperia XZ Premium reaches 750Mbps download speed over EE's LTE network

They don’t specify how they tested the upload, but the Xperia XZ Premium went up to 110Mbps. “The end of wires? It can’t be long,” says Sony.

[“Source-gsmarena”]

Firefox Focus Browser With Privacy Focus Launched for iOS; Ease of Use and Speed Touted

Firefox Focus Browser With Privacy Focus Launched for iOS; Ease of Use and Speed Touted

Mozilla believes that users lack meaningful control over their digital lives and there is no dedicated browser that allows them to search privately with ease. This is why the company has now launched its Internet browser Firefox Focus, which allows users to make those sensitive searches easily that might cause them discomfort if tracked otherwise.

The most crucial feature that Firefox Focus offers is that the browser is, by default, set on a private browsing mode and blocks many of the trackers that follow you around the Web, as per the company. Users are not required to change privacy or cookie settings. In case of websites that are dependent on tracking, if you don’t mind being tracked, the browser allows you to easily open the Web address in browsers like Firefox or Safari.

Further, Firefox Focus allows users to erase their entire browsing session with just a single tap and saves you from the trouble of going through several menus. You can download the browser from App Store.

Mozilla says that the technology used for tracking users is one of the primary reasons why mobile webpages are slow to load. This is why” it is likely you’ll notice a performance boost on the many sites that track your behaviour,” Mozilla said in its official blog post.

There are sensitive situations where the users might find the browser extremely useful, this includes searches for engagement rings, flights to Las Vegas or expensive cigars, as pointed out by Mozilla.

“Firefox Focus continues to operate as a Safari content blocker on iOS, and users will be able to take advantage of Tracking Protection on both Safari and Firefox Focus,” it added.

[Source:- gadgets.ndtv]

Indian Internet Speed Lowest in Asia-Pacific: Report

Indian Internet Speed Lowest in Asia-Pacific: Report

The global average internet connection speed increased 23 percent to 5.6 Mbps in the quarter ended December 2015 compared to the same period of 2014, a report said on Wednesday.

The report “Fourth Quarter, 2015, State of the Internet Report” was released by Akamai Technologies Inc., a global leader in content delivery network services.

“From a global perspective, the average connection speed increased 8.6 percent quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) and 23 percent year-over-year (YoY) to 5.6 Mbps, while the global average peak connection speed increased 1 percent QoQ, and increased 21 percent YoY to 32.5 Mbps,” it said.

South Korea had the highest average connection speed in Asia-Pacific region at 26.7 Mbps, while India had the lowest at 2.8 Mbps.

“This quarter’s (October to December 2015) report shows great YoY growth in average connection speeds and overall broadband adoption,” said David Belson, editor of the report.

South Korea (95.3 Mbps) and Macao (83.1 Mbps) were the only countries/regions to post double-digit quarterly gains in average peak connection speed at 10 percent and 13 percent, respectively.

“This is particularly important as consumer expectations rise and many high-profile events, like the summer games in Rio, will be streamed this year.

“The progress we are seeing across our key metrics shows that, while there’s still work to be done, more parts of the world are increasingly able to support the delivery of broadcast-quality video content online,” he added.

The report also showed each of the top 10 countries/regions saw double-digit growth in 25 Mbps broadband adoption except Hong Kong, which posted a 9.8 percent change quarter-over-quarter. Norway and Denmark saw the greatest yearly gains, the report cited.

On a global basis, close to 70 percent of the countries/regions saw a QoQ increase in unique IPv4 address counts in the last three months of 2015, up 10 percent from the July-September period of 2015.

The report also pointed out that 43 countries/regions saw IPv4 address counts grow 10 percent or more in the quarter ended December 2015 while 13 saw counts decline 10 percent or more compared with the July-September quarter of 2015.

The report also showed Britain had the fastest average mobile connection speed at 26.8 Mbps with Spain in second place at 14 Mbps. Iran had the lowest average connection speed, at 1.3 Mbps, followed by Vietnam with an average connection speed of 1.8 Mbps.

[Source:- NDTV]