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What is Latency?

by Iwan Price-Evans on Networking • May 10, 2022

Latency is the amount of delay between when something happens on one computer and when that same thing happens on another computer connected to the first. The delay depends on how fast each computer sends information over its network connection.

The more latency, the slower the connection.

Latency is measured in milliseconds (ms). A millisecond is 1/1000th of a second. You can think of it as the difference between a fast connection and a slow connection. The faster the connection, the less latency there will be

Latency impacts the speed at which users can interact with websites.

Latency is caused by several different things, such as distance between servers, bandwidth limitations, and other technical issues. In addition, latency can vary based on the type of connection used. For instance, a mobile device might have more latency than a desktop computer.

Latency can cause problems when using VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) services.

Latency can cause some problems with VoIP services. If you use Skype or Google Voice, you may notice that audio quality decreases as latency increases. This is because the voice packets sent across the internet take longer to reach their destination.

Latency can impact the performance of online games.

Latency can affect how well an online game performs. If the latency is too high, players might not be able to move quickly enough to react to what’s happening in the game. This can cause lag, which makes the game feel sluggish.

Latency can affect the quality of video streaming.

Latency is an issue with online video streaming because it affects the speed at which the video plays back. If there is too much latency, then the video will appear choppy or stutter. This makes it difficult to watch the video smoothly.