How Fast Are You? There’s an App for That.
The need for speed is a dominant requirement for the next generation mobile experience. As that experience becomes richer, more integrated (or “meshy” as I like to say…) with other applications, and certainly more visual in nature, our patience level as consumers, ironically, decreases. Forget that we may be travelling 70 mph on a highway or in the interior of crowded building, our expectation for a great, fast experience is only getting higher. And if we know that we don’t have a fast or robust enough connection to the network, then often it is best to defer using an application until we do (I speak from experience based on my blood pressure readings…) After all, why try to stream a video when you know the experience won’t be a good one (unless you are a glutton for punishment or thoroughly desperate for an escape…like I was on a 2 hour ground delay with a talkative stranger next to me in seat 10A.)?
To help you gauge and compare your mobile speed with others, we’ve made some enhancements to our free Global Internet Speed Test (or GIST) application which is part of our leading Cisco Visual Networking Index program. Cisco GIST currently supports iPhone, iPod Touch and BlackBerry Storm devices and measures network speeds over Wi-Fi, 3G or EDGE networks based on your location and current congestion in the network.
In addition to classifying your connection speed results as web-ready, audio-ready, or video ready and comparing your results against the global average, here are just four of the improvements we’ve made:
- First, tests are faster – the average test takes 15 seconds or less and you can see the location of the local server doing your test as well as your latitude and longitude
- Second, it charts out your last 10 results in an easy-to-read line graph at the top of the display and even keeps record your all-time high and average speeds versus global results are shown in a bar chart at the bottom of the display (to give you Mobile Internet bragging results)
- Third, we’ve integrated Google Maps into the app – you can see where you and others have run tests and name your favorite locations
- And last but not least, you can personalize your test results – add pictures to your favorite locations and tweet family and friends when you discover the best connectivity in town.
If you’d like to join the nearly 250,000 global users that are already enjoying the Cisco GIST application, just go to www.cisco.com/go/vni to find download links. And if you’re interested in seeing the latest test results of other GIST users around the globe, you can do that by visiting http://www.ciscovnipulse.com where real-time feeds show the ever dynamic mobile internet at work.