I remember when I first got to China and I was trying to surf the internet. As strange as it sounds, I had the feeling I was using a different internet. The connection was slow, I couldn’t access the websites that I was using on a regular basis back at home, all sort of windows would pop out on my screen and many other strange things would happen. For a while I stopped using the internet on my laptop because the experience was very frustrating. I was only using my IPhone when I had good Wifi connection, and that only for skype and to check my e-mail.
Nowadays though, I enjoy decent internet connections. There are, in my opinion, four ways you can have fast internet.
1. Invest more in the gadgets and apps you use
In my opinion, this is the easiest way to have a fast connection.
Back in 2014, when I first got to China, the laptop that I was using was pretty old. I realized that was part of the reason I had a slow internet. On the other hand, I was enjoying decent connections with my IPhone, which is a rather expensive gadget.
When I finally decided to change my laptop I choose to buy a MacBook Pro. Although more expensive, I was hoping it will offer me a better experience and it will keep away the viruses that were causing the slow connections. That prove to be a good decision and now I can surf the web without worrying that pages will not load.
Recently, I decided to also upgrade my phone and I bought the new IPhone 7. Comparing with my old 4S, the difference is just huge. I can use a bunch of applications at the same time and I can still have a rapid internet connection. Again, no regrets investing a bit more.
However, having expensive gadgets will not connect you to your favorite websites – Facebook, YouTube or Google. For that you will have to purchase a VPN subscription which will cost you around 100 dollars a year. Of course, there are also free VPNs available, but like most of the free stuff, they will give you headaches. They will stop working when you need them most, they will be slow, they will expire after a while etc. Buy yourself a good VPN and you will save yourself of many unpleasant experiences.
2. Turn off the VPN when you don’t need it
Funny, I just praised the VPNs and now I’m telling you not to use them when you don’t need them. Well, that is a good thing to do, because no matter how good your VPN is, it will still make your connection slower. That happens because the VPN will move your IP to a different location, so all your traffic will go through one extra location before accessing the servers of the websites that you want to surf on.
Especially if you are trying to connect to a Chinese website it is indicated to turn off your VPN. Sometimes you can’t connect at all to some websites (even non-Chinese websites) if you have your VPN on.
3. Take good care of your gadgets
This is a rather complicated solution for many, but taking good care of your gadgets can help you have faster connections, especially if you are using Windows. Make sure you update your apps regularly and you have a good antivirus. The laptop I first had, when I came to China, got virused quickly and it became almost impossible to connect it to the internet.
4. Go Chinese
This solution is rather hard to accept for people who are very attached to their Western products, but if the only thing you want is a fast connection, than you can definitely rely on the Chinese products which will obviously do better with the Chinese internet.
Buy a Xiaomi phone, it has a good quality and it doesn’t cost much, make a QQ e-mail account, that will work faster than your Gmail or Yahoo account, it will also allow you to attach very large files, and last, but not least, use Baidu and Bing instead of Google, Youku instead of YouTube and so on. In three months’ time your favorite social network will definitely be Weibo.