Congratulations, you have Starlink! Now you want to see how it’s performing at your various locations. Here is a guide on how to check your Starlink speed stats. There is no “right way” to test your Starlink speeds, so select the test of your choice.
There are a few different ways to test your Starlink speeds. We will be covering testing within the Starlink App, on Speedtest.net, and on Fast.com.
Starlink In-App Speedtest
Update: Starlink has streamlined their speed test to alleviate some of the confusion of the 3 metrics it provides. Here is the latest on it.
The official Starlink App Speedtest offers 3 different metrics.
Before their latest update to it, the in-app speed test would go through all 3, page by page. It gave you “Phone-Internet”, “Router-Internet” and “Phone-Router”, in that order.
The confusion with this was that it stopped on the last metric, “Phone-Router”. This provides a ridiculously high number, prompting many users to think this was their actual internet speed. Luckily, Starlink realized this and changed it in the app with a recent update.
What do the Metrics Mean?
The “Phone-Internet” gives you your actual internet connectivity speeds from the phone you are testing from to the internet. The “Router-Internet” gives you the internet speed that your router is receiving, which it will broadcast over Wi-Fi to whatever devices you connect to it. The “Phone-Router” gives you the connection speed from your device to the router, not actual internet speeds. This one is just telling you how strong of a Wi-Fi signal you have to the router.
Starlink’s Newest In-App Speedtest
The new speedtest Starlink launched recently simplifies things greatly. Most users are really only interested in their actual internet speed.
When you click “Speed” from the main screen of the app, it starts a little speedometer-type animation. This is giving you your “Phone-Internet” download speed, which is typically what most users are looking for.
It’s simple, bold, and straightforward. Basically, “HERE IS YOUR SPEED”. Below the download speed, you will see your Upload speed and Latency (Ping).
If you would like to see the other metrics, all you have to do is wait for that part of the test to finish and you will see “SWIPE FOR ADVANCED” at the bottom of the screen. This will bring you to the Advanced Screen, where you can see your Wi-Fi Speed and your Starlink Speed.
Starlink Speedtest MAIN Screen
Starlink Speedtest ADVANCED Screen
Another quicker way to get a Speedtest for Starlink is through Ookla’s Speedtest App or website, speedtest.net. This is an uber popular test because of its quickness to deploy and fast results. The app feels busy and like it is spammed with ads, but it’s still worth using for a quick, down-and-dirty speed test.
Ookla’s Speedtest via the iPhone app:
The Fast Speedtest (fast.com), powered by Netflix, is another great, quick option to see your general speeds for Starlink. It’s a very simple, clean looking interface.
Some say this is a more accurate test because it is run by Netflix and supposed to provide more “real-world” results with how it is tested, but both have to be taken with a grain of salt as they will both vary wildly, even sometimes when doing multiple tests in a row.
Starlink Speed Tests Explained: How to Interpret Results
So, you’ve successfully run a speedtest. Congrats!! Now…what do all those numbers mean? Below is a quick description of the main result numbers.
The download is basically your internet speed and the most important for most users. Fast.com actually has the main result (download) as “Your Internet speed is”. This is the most relevant for general internet use, streaming, etc. This is measured in MegaBits Per Second (“mbps”).
Upload is how fast you transmit data back to the internet. This is important for video chats, live-streaming, uploading files, gaming, etc. This is also measured in mbps.
According to speedtest.net, Latency (or Ping) is the reaction time of your connection-how quickly your device gets a response after you’ve sent out a request. A low latency (fast ping) means a more responsive connection, especially in applications where timing is everything (like video games). Latency is measured in milliseconds (ms).
According to speedtest.net, Also called Packet Delay Variation (PDV), jitter frequency is a measure of the variability in ping over time. Jitter is not usually noticeable when reading text, but when streaming and gaming a high jitter can result in buffering and other interruptions. Technically, this is a measure of the average of the deviation from the mean.
DIYRV LIVING Pro Tip:
If you haven’t already, split your Wi-Fi connection so you have the 2.4ghz and 5ghz connection options. 2.4ghz connections will travel further at the sacrifice of some speed. 5ghz will offer you top available speeds at a lower range (usually the choice for most RVers while in or around the rig). This is done in the Starlink app by going to Settings and clicking the first slider bar you see under WIFI CONFIGURATION.
You can then go to your Wi-Fi settings on your device (phone, computer, tv, etc.) and select the 5g option. This will be the same password that you set up. Make sure to un-select “auto-join” from the 2g network (it may or may not even state that it is the 2g network) so that it automatically connects to the 5g network going forward.
Speedtests are a great way to see if you are connected to the internet and how Starlink is performing. This is especially useful for nomads like you and I that use Starlink in different areas all the time. Many of us test our internet as the first step in seeing if we will stay in a spot we have found before setting up camp if we need to work and have a reliable, fast connection.
I recommend trying all of these and maybe using them all each time you run a speedtest to get sort of an average of them as they will all likely vary from each other, depending on a number of factors. As long as Starlink has a connection where you set it up, it will likely be 10x the download speeds as the cellular data you have been using. It is THAT FAST on a regular basis when connected.