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What’s the best broadband for gaming in 2024?

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Gamers need fast internet speed, but which broadband provider can meet all of your needs? Here’s what you need to know when searching for the best Wi-Fi for gaming.

Man playing video game

To play (and succeed) in online games without disruption, a minimum download speed of 25Mbps is recommended by experts. For the ideal gaming experience, broadband speeds of 100Mbps or above are ideal. This means you’ll need a fast, reliable broadband connection.

From the types of games you play, to the internet speed required, here are five points to consider when choosing the best internet for gaming:

1. Speed

Slow broadband speed means slow gaming. If you want to game online by yourself or enjoy a multiplayer experience, you need good broadband speed. As a minimum, you should have at least 3Mbps.

The Nintendo Switch requires a minimum download speed of 3Mbps and a minimum upload speed of 1Mbps. The Xbox requires a download speed of 3Mbps and upload speed of 0.5Mbps, while the PlayStation requires a download and upload speed of 2Mbps.

However, the faster your internet speed, the more responsive your game will feel. And competitive gamers often prefer fast connections because it gives them the edge over their opponents. So if you take online gaming seriously, you’d want a minimum of 50-100Mbps broadband speed.


Popular online games tend to use between 40MB - 300MB of data per hour but it all depends on the game. Most broadband providers offer unlimited data packages, but check your terms and conditions if you’re gaming and downloading throughout the day.

3. Full fibre vs part-fibre

Fibre broadband provides faster internet connection, making it an ideal type of internet for gaming.

Full fibre broadband offers speeds of up to 1000Mbps, while part-fibre offers between 30-80Mbps. So, when choosing broadband providers, consider fibre broadband as it allows you to game online without any issues.

More about full fibre broadband.

4. The game you’re playing

The type of games you typically play will impact the type of broadband deal you need.

If you play against friends in online multiplayer games, you’ll need broadband with high upload speeds. This will allow you to be quick with your responses, so your gaming won’t lag behind others. For online multiplayer gaming, an upload speed of 5Mbps or more is recommended.

4K gaming on the other hand is all about high-resolution graphics. To experience 4K gaming in its full beauty, you need fast download speeds – an ADSL connection with 3Mbps will not be able to cope with the demand.

If you’re a streamer on platforms like Twitch, you need broadband with a little extra bandwidth. Minimum download and upload speeds of 25Mbps are needed across mainstream streaming services, but it depends on what you’re broadcasting.

5. Your broadband provider

Each broadband provider offers different deals at different prices. You need to find the best Wi-Fi for gaming that suits your household needs.

Virgin Media broadband has its own unique cable network to provide ultrafast broadband to various regions of the UK. It offers speeds of up to 1,130Mbps, making it perfect for online gamers, but it’s more expensive than other options.

On the other hand, EE full fibre offers a top speed of 1,600Mbps top speed, which is ideal for those streaming 4K games online.

Either way, your budget and needs will impact your choice of broadband provider. But two key things you should look out for are reliability and good customer service. Read reviews and pick a provider that has a reliable service. Then make sure your chosen provider has a dedicated customer support line or online chat feature. This will make communication easier in the long run.

PCs tend to have better hardware which means they can handle more data and operate at a faster speed. So, playing on a PC can be quicker than on a console, but it depends on the network and browser speed.

If you want to game without any disruption, a minimum download speed of 25Mbps is ideal. But don’t forget that others in the house might also be using the internet too, so broadband speed will depend on the number of connections.

As well as looking into the minimum internet speed, you also need to compare ping rates. The ping rate is the reaction time of your internet connection and the speed at which you get a response after you’ve sent out a request. This is usually measured in milliseconds (ms) and it impacts the speed of your gaming experience. When gaming, you need a ping rate of at least 150ms or less. The lower the ping rate the better, and the lowest rate available is about 2ms.

Yes, your internet speed does impact download time. So you’ll likely notice a difference in the time taken to download a game depending on what your speed is.

Most games reach over 100GB in size. To download such a big file size, it could take hours or even days if you have a slow internet speed. For example, if you wanted to download Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare III (which is almost 175 GB), it would take about 132.7 hours to download on a 3Mbps connection.

Yes, if you want to stream your games online you’ll need fast broadband speed.

If you want to stream on Twitch, you’ll need an upload speed of at least 8Mbps, while Xbox Cloud Gaming has a minimum download speed of 10Mbps or 20Mbps for iPad users.

The PlayStation Portal Remote Player, which streams compatible games installed on your PS5 console, requires internet speeds of at least 5Mbps. For a better gaming and streaming experience, it recommends a high-speed connection of at least 15Mbps.

Your specific needs and requirements will determine which broadband provider you choose. Here’s a look at the main broadband providers and what they can offer you:

Provider Virgin Media Gigabit EE full fibre Sky Gigafast fibre BT full fibre TalkTalk full fibre 900 Plusnet full fibre
Speed (average download speed)
Cost per month

Table showing the average speed and cost for six UK broadband providers.

Yes, you just need to look around and compare broadband deals.

Altnet providers could offer fast speeds at low prices.  They are smaller broadband providers that own their own network or offer a broadband deal that isn’t supplied by BT’s Openreach or Virgin Media.

Community Fibre for example, is an altnet broadband provider that offers speeds from 67Mbps all the way to 3Gbps (equal to 3000Mbps). You can take out either a 12- or 24-month contract.

There are cheap deals for gaming but you need to take time and do your research to find the best ones. We can help with finding the best broadband for gaming.

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