You thought your dial-up internet days were behind you, but your broadband is chugging so slowly it’s like you’ve stepped back 10 years. A slow connection is frustrating and regular tasks such as checking your email can take forever. But don’t get stuck with slow broadband speed, here are some ways to speed things up.

1. Check your browser

Whether you are using Internet Explorer, Safari, Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome, keep your browser updated to the latest version. It will make your internet faster, and you can install add-ons to your browser to increase broadband speed.

2. Secure your network

To increase broadband speed, limit the number of devices which can access your network. The more people who can connect to your broadband, the slower your connection will be. Don’t leave your network open for anyone to hijack: change your settings and set up a password.

3. Re-position your router

Position your router carefully to keep the signal strength unaffected. Keep it away from walls and partitions, as signals can’t travel through obstacles. Ideally, place your router in the middle of your house, in a high place with few obstacles and away from other wireless devices.

Another way to speed up your broadband is to reduce the distance between the router and your PC. Pick the closest socket to your PC and connect your router to it.

4. Change your computer settings

If too many applications or programs are running in the background – especially ones which are trying to connect to the internet – it will slow down your speed. For example, programs such as Dropbox, which automatically run in the background, can slow your connection. Close down as many programs as possible to speed things up, and change your settings to stop programs from launching on start-up.

Another trick is to empty your browser cache and delete your history at regular intervals.

Automatic updates also slow down your connection. You can switch them off for certain programs – but keep automatic updates switched on for security programs such as antivirus.

5. Upgrade your plan

If none of these tricks work, you might have to upgrade your broadband plan to increase speed and better suit your internet needs.

Get in touch with your current provider – STC, Mobily or Zain – and check available upgrade options and costs. Remember, always compare packages, as you might be able to get a better deal by switching providers.

6. Test your speed

Once you have upgraded, you can use tools such as Speedtest, or Testmy.net to check if you’re getting the speed promised by your service provider.