Is it true providers can slow my fibre broadband at will? Why is this and how can I stop it happening?
This is true, but to what extent it is done is very hard to determine. In most cases it is referred to as “Traffic Shaping”.
If you imagine that you are in a village of 200 properties which only has 1 internet service provider (ISP).
Le’t say that the provider allocates 10Gbps of available bandwidth for the village (which is a very basic version of how broadband is delivered, a finite pool of bandwidth shared between residents).
So in theory, all users if shared equally, will have 50Mbps. (10,000Mbps / 200 residents). But what if one of those residents is a Youth Hostel, which has 200 guests all using the bandwidth? They will be consuming more, versus a premises with a single occupant.
In order to ensure every residence has a balanced experience, the ISP needs to throttle back some heavy users, that may be adversely impacting the rest.
This is a really simplistic way of looking at it and is a lot more complex, but hopefully this gives you the concept!
What a great way to put it! Looking at it from this perspective, I can see it is done for the greater good- which is completely understandable. Prior to this, I had assumed it was a way for providers to stop customers from taking advantage of ‘unlimited’ packages. Actually, understanding that it means my continuity of service will be more consistent is really reassuring and I was not expecting that. Thanks very much!