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Best speed test apps in 2022: Test your internet speed

Best speed test apps
(Image credit: Tapati Rinchumrus/Shutterstock)

The best speed test apps will help you ensure you’re getting all of the data you pay your internet service provider (ISP) for each month. At the same time, cost is becoming an increasingly important factor when deciding on the best Wi-Fi router as many devices now cost several hundreds of dollars.

This way, if you do decide to drop over $500 on a Netgear Nighthawk RAXE500 with Wi-Fi 6e, one of the best speed test apps can ensure you’re getting the most out of your broadband subscription.

As Wi-Fi 6 becomes more mainstream with reports that Wi-Fi 7 will arrive next year, the speed test apps on this list will give you all the necessary information you need when configuring your home network in your house or apartment. They can also help when troubleshooting with your ISP if you experience sudden packet loss.

Unfortunately though, not all speed test apps are created in the same way. Based on how they are coded, you might find your results to be slower in one app than in another. Additionally, many ISPs offer their own bespoke speed test services to upsell consumers on faster plans, even when they might not need them.

As is often the case, when you call customer support in regard to poor internet performance, the company representative will direct you to an ISP-made speed test website. Suddenly your internet speed is returning download and upload speeds that were higher than before. This is likely because the ISP has servers closer to your area.

It’s not that your ISP is lying to you, but using an ISP-made speed test app gives the company an advantage. The information isn’t false but it’s also not always indicative of real-world performance which is why none of our recommended speed test apps are tied to ISPs.

Speed tests apps aren’t an exact science either. They’re a good approximation, a tool that can help you figure out what’s wrong with your internet connection. For this reason, we recommend running a speed test at least three times with any app to get an average though it also doesn’t hurt to run speed tests with multiple apps.

Here’s a breakdown of the best speed test apps available today and why we chose them. 

What are the best speed test apps?

After thoroughly testing multiple speed test apps, we found the ones with clean interfaces and less clutter to rank closer to the top. These include Meteor by OpenSignal and SpeedTest Master.

However, it’s not just the speed tests themselves that matter but also the secondary information that’s important. This can include what connectivity is like to different servers, like the PlayStation Network, or more granular information such as a chart of your home’s Wi-Fi strength.

Below you’ll find a variety of speed test apps, some are free while some come with an upcharge, but all of them are worth considering if you want to know what internet speeds you’re really getting from your ISP or mobile carrier.

Quick tips before running a speed test

Before running a speed test, ensure that your network environment is clean. What do we mean by that? Make sure that nobody else is using the internet at that particular moment in time. Someone watching Netflix downstairs will affect data pulled in via a speed-test app. 

While using an app on your phone, make sure your Wi-Fi is set to a 5Ghz frequency, if your router supports it, and sit as close to the router as possible. Also ensure that there are no obstructions between you and the router. 

For anyone testing via a laptop or desktop, we'd recommend plugging an Ethernet cable directly into your router. This will ensure you're getting an unhindered connection. If you notice your speeds are slower on Ethernet than on Wi-Fi, it might be time to change out Ethernet cables. We recommend goes with a CAT6 Ethernet cable. Also, be careful. Just because a product on Amazon is advertised as CAT6, scroll down to the reviews. See if someone has opened up a cable to show if it's actually a CAT6 cable, and not a CAT5. Personally, we're huge fans of Monoprice. Not only are the prices reasonable (if bought directly off the Monoprice website), the quality of the cables are solid. UGreen, Mediabridge and Cable Matters are also good brands worth considering. Amazon Basics tend to also make good Ethernet cables, and if you have any issues, filing a return should be simple. 

According to our sister-site Windows Central (opens in new tab), there's really no reason to go beyond CAT6. At the moment, CAT7 is not an officially supported home networking standard, and not only that, the purported speeds it promises are seldom offered by ISPs. 

Lastly, for both phones and computers, close all background applications that may be sucking up bandwidth. 

Screengrab of Meteor app via YouTube

(Image credit: Opensignal via YouTube)

1. Meteor by OpenSignal

Meteor (opens in new tab) by OpenSignal is a fast independent speed-test app that offers reliable speed tests with a slick interface. Not only is it free, available on both iOS (opens in new tab) and Android (opens in new tab), it lays out in simple, plain terms what your internet speed is like.

Apart from offering download, upload and ping response times, it doesn't give much deeper network information. It does, however, include information on cellular coverage, which could be handy when traveling. 

You can also test performance on individual apps. For example, I was able to test network performance when trying to ping the servers for Pokémon Go.

Meteor by OpenSignal is one of those rare apps that looks and feels so high-quality, you're surprised it's being offered for free.

Screengrab of Apple App Store website of SpeedTest Master app

(Image credit: Apple Apps)

2. SpeedTest Master (iOS, Android)

SpeedTest Master (opens in new tab) is a powerful speed test app for both iOS (opens in new tab) and Android (opens in new tab). It offers a bevy of tools outside of simple speed tests, such as being able to measure the ping response time for PlayStation Network, Steam, YouTube, TikTok and social-media networks.

It can also test Wi-Fi signal strength, letting you know where you need to position yourself for ideal connectivity. Another cool feature is being able to analyze various Wi-Fi signals, informing you of which ones offer the best connection. If you're in a busy area with many signals, this app will let you know which is the best to ping off of, assuming that Wi-Fi connection is open to the public.

The downside to SpeedTest Master is that it's not free. While you can use it a limited number of times with ads, to unlock unlimited testing, it will cost either $1.99/month, $7.99/year or $14.99/lifetime.

Apart from the cost, SpeedTest Master is robust and a must-have for anyone obsessed with connectivity.

Speed Test WiFi Analyzer

(Image credit: Google Play)

3. Speed Test WiFi Analyzer by analiti

Speed Test WiFi Analyzer by analiti Experts Group might not be the prettiest speed test app, but it's definitely powerful. The program's utilitarian design gives you very detailed information without any fluff. Not only does Speed Test do standard speed tests well, but it also has a built-in Wi-Fi analyzer to help detail coverage in different parts of your home. This feature is especially handy for users who have multiple nodes. If you're a nerd for deep Wi-Fi metrics, this app will give you detailed RSSI stats, a signal analyzer, decoded IEEE 802.11 beacon information, a spectrum map, and TCP and UDP tests for iPerf3 servers. If none of that made sense to you, then maybe the other speed test apps on this list would be a better fit.

Either way, Speed Test WiFi Analyzer by analiti is available on Google Play and the Amazon Appstore (opens in new tab). Unfortunately, there is not an iOS variant. The app is available for free, but paying a one-time $1.99 fee will remove ads. For access to the expert features listed above, the app will cost $0.99 for 24 hours, $1.99 for the month, $9.99 for the year and $19.99 for life. 

Speedtest by Ookla app

(Image credit: Pe3k | Shutterstock)

4. Speedtest by Ookla  (iOS, Android, Windows, Mac)

Ookla's Speedtest app is one of the most popular around. Not only has it been around for years, it offers reliable tests for free. The information it gives is relatively bare-bones, but it gets the job done. Because the app is free, it does have ads. There is an option to remove ads for an additional .99 cents on both iOS (opens in new tab) and Android (opens in new tab). The Windows (opens in new tab) and Mac (opens in new tab) versions don't have this option.

The app also tracks your results history, can show you the health of your cellular network map and has a built-in VPN. Tom's Guide has not independently tested the strength and effectiveness of Ookla's VPN. 

Apple App Store screengrab of Fast Speed Test App

(Image credit: Apple Apps)

5. Fast by Netflix (iOS, Android)

We like Fast by Netflix for how easy it is to use. As soon as you turn on the app, it starts measuring your download speed. There isn't even a "go" button. 

It's also a very light and basic app, meaning you can leave it on your phone without having to worry about space. It's actually so basic, we wonder if it's just a container for the fast.com (opens in new tab) website. It's currently available on both iOS (opens in new tab) and Android (opens in new tab)

Luckily, there is an option to show more detailed information, such as unloaded and loaded latency, upload speed and your public IP address. Users can also save their results to keep as records. 

Microsoft Store screengrab of Network Speed Test app

(Image credit: Microsoft Store)

6. Network Speed Test by Microsoft (Windows)

Microsoft's Network Speed Test app, available via the Microsoft Store (opens in new tab), is a strong tool. It's light and bare-bones, but it gives you the information you need upfront. 

It doesn't have more robust features, such as being able to test signal performance or check the range of your overall network, but should be sufficient for most people. At the moment, it's only available for Windows computers. 

Either way, this clean speed-test app logs a handful of past tests so that you're able to compare. It also lists the type of connection used so you're not accidentally comparing Wi-Fi tests against Ethernet. 

Anthony Spadafora
Senior Editor Security and Networking

Anthony Spadafora is the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to password managers and the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. Before joining the team, he wrote for ITProPortal while living in Korea and later for TechRadar Pro after moving back to the US. Based in Houston, Texas, when he’s not writing Anthony can be found tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.