Why is downloading speed faster than uploading speed?


Why is downloading speed faster than uploading speed?

In: Technology

People download much more than they upload, so the download speeds are typically prioritized.. Which with DOCSIS 3.1 this will probably start changing..

Because people mostly “consume” internet content, and rarely contribute to it. Usually only small amount of upload is sufficient to send requests, messages and upload few images here and there.

Aditionally ISP’s sell that remaining upload capacity to the server farms and make an extra profit. Servers need that extra capacity since they mostly “serve” content that people consume.

As the other mentioned, that is by design based on the fact that historically the content and data where created by the owner of the site. For instance, ADSL has been designed to provide more capacity to download over upload.

Now, a lot of content gets created by users, but you still hope more people will watch this content that the creator.

It varies according to different technologies.

Under DSL (which isn’t used much anymore), all of the upload requests were routed to the same location. The concentration of the upload traffic could easily overload the connection point to the internet with too much crosstalk between physical wire channels, so upload speeds were limited.

With cable technologies (using various DOCSIS versions), the data is broken up into different frequency channels. There are a limited number of these assigned to internet data transmission– many others are assigned to video content that travels on the same wire. Since people in general consume more content than they generate, fewer channels are assigned to upload data. This also allows quoting of faster download speeds without overburdening the network.

With optical cable (Fios, e.g.) there is so much bandwidth available that they can provide symmetric speeds (same speed up and down). This is more attractive now that people are generating more of their own content with social media, videos, zoom sessions, etc.