It is always frustrating when you click on a website and get a spinning wheel. But how much does it cost for a faster broadband speed at home – and is a faster package really what you need?

Put simply, the faster you want to access websites, the more you are going to have to pay. But before you sign up to the first home package that comes your way, do a thorough search first because you don’t want to fork out for a package you never fully utilize.

Then you need to understand what you are looking for. For those unclear what broadband actually is – it is a term used to describe high-speed internet access that is faster than the traditional dial-up access.

Broadband allows users to access the online information they want at a higher speed and allows more content to be carried through the transmission channel. The wider or broader a transmission channel, the greater the information-carrying capacity.

The speeds you see advertised relate to the amount of time it takes to download data from the internet to your computer. Download speeds are measured in megabits per second (Mbps), and the faster the speed, the faster the connection. It is wise to remember, however, the number quoted is the fastest claimed capacity – with the actual speed available to users likely to be lower.

A single user checking their email and booking a holiday every now and then will certainly not need any more than the standard 8Mbps. A good example is du’s Talk and Surf: 8Mbps – it comes with a landline, five email accounts and access to du’s basic digital TV package.

Super speeds of 20Mbps or more are really only useful for households with multiple users who may be gaming, streaming videos and more all at the same time. For AED 599, Etisalat eLife Double Play has a 50Mbps download speed with an unlimited offer on the amount of data you can download.

Those wanted to go the extra mile could pay AED 1,079 for du’s Talk Surf and Watch Premium: 100Mbps, which also comes with an unlimited download limit.

However, if you really do want a faster speed, no matter what package you buy other factors can affect your speed such as the number of users, the quality and position of your router and the number of things you are doing online.

If you are downloading a film while also sending an email, playing a music video and checking your bank balance, you may experience lower speeds. And if 10 of your friends have popped round and are surfing on a broadband package only designed for your needs, that will also have an effect.

For those who have no idea what their speed is, the UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has a handy tool to test your own broadband speed.For the best results on the test, connect your web device directly to the internet socket in the wall and switch off any other applications, webpages and other devices using the internet. The answer should give you peace of mind that you are getting the speeds you are paying for. Happy surfing!