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What Is Channel Bonding? It Could Double Your Internet Speed

by Geek Insider Staff
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Channel bonding could help provide a better browsing experience. So, if you want fast internet speed, channel bonding with hardware and software could come in handy.

Save yourself from the tortuous nature of a slow internet connection due to a limit set by your internet service provider.

Multiple Internet Connections

Your area is the primary determinant of your internet speed. Therefore, your service provider should deploy the necessary infrastructure to ensure smooth connectivity to your home or business. Above all, the provider should show you a coverage map to show whether you’re within range.

Also, check whether your preferred service provider’s bandwidth meets your needs. If you need more bandwidth than offered in a single connection, consider an additional connection. You can talk to the same service provider about this or consider a different provider, especially one that uses different technology.

Most companies offer the secondary connection mainly in the form of a backup connection that reroutes all traffic when the primary one fails. They call it “failover.”

Although failover helps sustain internet connectivity, it doesn’t increase the internet speed, meaning that you’ll still need channel bonding or load balancing. Both have different costs and depend on how your network internet traffic is routed.

Internet Data Routing

Your device relies on the server to interact with a browser.

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The server uses a socket to deliver all the components in a web page, including images and texts, as a data packet. In this case, the socket acts as a pipe with liquid (packets of data) flowing from the server to you.

For example, the server delivered the image above as fragmented packets, and the web browser reassembled it.

Load Balancing

Load balancing is the splitting of internet traffic among several internet providers. Your router must allow numerous WAN connections to support load balancing.

(IMAGE 2)

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The internet connections could come from different providers or technology, but your router will still be connected to a single network.

As you can see from the image above, both internet service providers provide 5Mbps connectivity each. So, if one of the users started streaming a movie on 8Mbps, load balance would not help because you require a larger pipe (single-socket transfer) to accommodate such a file.

Channel Bonding

Channel bonding targets the traffic at the packet level and splits it among multiple connections. This makes it possible for you to stream movies requiring larger Mbps. Chiefly, the process combines the different connections into one.

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The internet traffic must first be split and stitched again for the combination to happen.

Channel bonding has both software and hardware options. You need the hardware option if you want channel bonding to work in your network. Companies dealing with this type of hardware give you a device that supports multiple connections. The data is then transferred to the company for processing before being sent back to you.

Note that you still need to subscribe to the service as the company uses its servers to complete the whole process.

With the high costs associated with fiber connections, you should bond multiple ADSL connections, which are cheaper. However, the connections may have varying mileage.

Channel Bonding Software

Luckily, modern technology has introduced devices that can use multiple internet connections simultaneously. Now you can channel bond your LTE connections and Wi-Fi connections using channel bonding software in your smartphone.

“Speedify” is one popular channel bonding software that can speed up your internet experience. The software has apps supported by iOS, macOS, Windows, and Android.

Moreover, you can simultaneously use 4G, 3G, Wi-Fi, and wired connections to enhance connectivity speed through channel bonding.

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You can speed tests for three connections: LTE, Wi-Fi, and Speedify’s channel bonding.

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The results indicate a significant improvement. The simple test also shows channel bonding enhances faster browsing. When you opt for Speedify, you will enjoy a free 2GB optimization per month, after which you continue with $6 per month.

The only limitation with having the Speedify app on your phone is that it’s only limited to the device. To address this issue, the company has introduced “Connectify” to bring the capability into your Windows PC and turn it into a router.

You simply need to conduct a little configuration on Windows PC and channel bond a 4G internet connection and an Ethernet.

Connectify will let you share the bonded connection with other users in your network. Be sure to limit the features as mobile data can be expensive, and leaving it uncontrolled would lead to an extortionate bill.

Connectify also comes at a cost. You’ll have to buy a license for either Connectify Hotspot Max or Connectify Hotspot Pro to use Connectify for channel bonding between your devices. The Hotspot Max costs about $80, providing you a lifetime license with bridging mode, Wi-Fi repeater, and custom IP and DHCP Controls. On the other hand, the Hotspot Pro comes in at $50 without the three features in Max.

Do You Have Problems with Channel Bonding?

If a faster internet connection or channel bonding proves a hassle, you still have options. You can set limits on users through software like Ubiquiti’s UniFi. This way, you provide a better browsing experience through a shaped internet connection.

You can also incorporate the “Quality of Service” (QoS) feature found in other systems such as AmpliFI. If your network is highly congested, check whether your router supports QoS. Note that channel bonding has cost implications and requires some processing work. However, it can provide a much-needed connectivity speed improvement for you and your network when other methods won’t.

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