AT&T slow internet? See how to make your internet faster

Anton P. | October 26, 2023

AT&T slow internet speeds can result from a problem on your provider’s or your end. 

For instance, signal strength or the number of devices connecting to the internet could influence your speed. If the internet is slow and the usual solutions do not make a difference, you might need help from AT&T. 

Let’s see quick fixes for dealing with AT&T slow internet connection. Sometimes, a few simple steps can improve your internet speed. 

Learn how to fix AT&T slow internet.

Why AT&T internet could be slow for you

AT&T slow internet connection can occur for network issues in your household. Typically, the following scenarios might trigger slower upload or download speeds: 

  • Too many devices connect to your network, exceeding the number stated in your internet plans.
  • Your modem/router cannot support the speed you expect to receive. 
  • Devices connected are too far away from your AT&T router, making it difficult to have a stable connection. 
  • Your router needs regular maintenance, like clearing the cache. 
  • Peer-to-peer activities can consume a lot of bandwidth, making other connections run slower. 
  • Malware and other infections can slow down your connection as well. 
  • Physical obstacles and faulty router position can interfere with fast and stable connection speed. 
  • AT&T service issues or maintenance work could disturb customers’ connectivity.
  • Wi-Fi signals are also vulnerable to interference from other devices. 
  • You might also exceed data caps, but AT&T internet users won’t face them with fiber plans. However, non-fiber plans have specified data speed caps. 
  • AT&T slow internet service can occur because of network congestion if many customers in an area access the network simultaneously. 

Could AT&T throttle your internet connection? 

AT&T has allegedly throttled its customers’ internet speed after they hit a specific usage limit. However, these customers paid for unlimited plans, meaning the service provider throttled their traffic unfairly. 

While AT&T denied these allegations, it settled in 2019, obliging to pay $61 million to eligible customers. The throttling occurred from late 2011 to the middle of 2015. Thus, users can still apply to see if they can receive compensation. 

Currently, most AT&T home internet plans do not have data caps. All fiber plans offer unlimited data. However, some data limits apply when fiber plans are not an option. So, pay close attention to the conditions of your internet plan. 

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How to make AT&T slow internet faster

If AT&T customers experience slow download or upload speeds, there are several ways to restore their internet connection: 

  1. Look at your AT&T internet plan

AT&T slow internet could occur because your chosen internet plan does not match your needs. For instance, most plans specify the number of devices that can connect and browse comfortably. 

Thus, you can exceed this number or use devices with higher screen sizes/resolutions. The plan might also show the best possible speeds for wired connections. WiFi networks can face other interruptions, like interference from other devices.  

  1. Run an internet speed test 

An internet speed test reveals the speeds your device works with when online. You can judge how it differs from the speed specified in your plan. However, remember that many factors can influence your speed.

  1. Perform router maintenance

Users should perform several steps to keep their routers running smoothly:

  • Place your router in a visible and accessible location, unobstructed by other objects. 
  • Perform regular updates to your router to ensure it runs on the latest version. Log into your router’s firmware to find available updates.  
  • Reboot your router to remove the cache from your device. Additionally, when the router powers back on, it can choose the least crowded channel for frequency. 
  1. Disconnect unnecessary devices from the network

If you have too many devices going online, disconnect some of them. Then, run a speed test or perform online activities to see if that helped. It might be best to disconnect devices performing more bandwidth-heavy actions.

  1. Wi-Fi interference makes AT&T internet slower 

The 2.4 GHz band is more susceptible to interference from other devices. Thus, you can solve the slow connection problem by switching to the 5 GHz band. However, remember that 5GHz has a smaller coverage range. Therefore, the Wi-Fi signals might only cover part of your home.

  1. AT&T slow at particular times 

AT&T slow internet can happen during peak usage hours. It means many users connect to the internet simultaneously. To manage all customers, the service might perform necessary maintenance. As a result, your internet connection might run slower. 

  1. Check for Wi-Fi piggybacking 

It is possible that neighbors or other people connect to your network. Wi-Fi piggybacking can increase the number of devices connected to your internet. Thus, access your router’s admin page and disconnect devices you do not recognize. 

You should also change the network settings (password) to prevent unauthorized access in the future. 

  1. Scan for malware 

Malware infections could interrupt your internet connection. Thus, scan your devices regularly to see if everything is in order. Malware can consume a lot of your device’s resources. Thus, your activities have less memory to work with. 

  1. Contact AT&T support 

If AT&T slow internet persists despite various troubleshooting steps, you might need to contact your provider. They can assist with other possible solutions for your internet speed problem. For instance, service outages might occur in your area. 

  1. Protect your networks

Your network should defend against unauthorized access and possible snooping. Thus, use modern network security keys like WPA3. Also, a VPN (Virtual Private Network) can protect your devices and ensure that your data travels more securely. In some cases, VPNs increase internet speeds for certain services.

Anton P.

Anton P.

Former chef and the head of Atlas VPN blog team. He's an experienced cybersecurity expert with a background of technical content writing.

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