What is latency and how does it affect IP voice

In today’s article, we will explain what internet latency 馃摗 is, the derived problems that can influence your company’s communications 馃摫 and tips to solve them. Do not stop reading this article!

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Implementing a VoIP communications system has many advantages for a business.

Many times companies opt for cloud-based phone systems, as they are simpler, more efficient, safer and less expensive than traditional voice communication systems.

Despite the advantages, when implementing a VoIP system in a company, we must bear in mind that having a quality internet connection is essential.

Issues such as internet latency, network saturation or 鈥渏itter鈥 drive some companies crazy.

If you don’t have a stable and powerful internet connection, calls can be heard choppy or directly make the desired communication impossible.

A broadband connection and latency control will greatly improve your telephone service. We will explain below how to detect common problems such as the latency of your connection and how to solve them.


What is latency?

Sometimes, when we implement a VoIP communication telephone system in companies, voice delay problems can arise when making calls.

This problem of lag between the voice that is emitted when speaking and the time it takes for the person on the other end of the phone to hear it, we identify it as latency or delay.

High latency or very high latency causes poor call quality.


what latency
Latency, connection speed and bandwidth, how do they complement each other?

Although these terms may be confused as similar, their characteristics and functionalities are unique and different in each case.

An optimal internet connection in your company does not depend solely on the server. You must take care of other aspects such as bandwidth, speed and latency:

– Bandwidth: allows you to transmit the data you need at maximum capacity.

– Connection speed: determines the time it takes and in what quality you can upload or download data and information from the network.

– Latency: is essential to determine how long it will take for information to arrive from a computer to a receiver and that can cause delays.

On the one hand, the connection speed influences the latency when we go from a predetermined range.

On the other hand, latency is usually associated with broadband, but, although both affect connection speed, broadband allows a large amount of data to be transmitted, while latency determines at what speed that amount of data is transmitted.

Summarizing all of the above, we must take into account that although latency, bandwidth and speed belong to a similar language, their characteristics and functionalities are different.

You must understand that an optimal internet connection service does not depend only on a server failure but also other factors such as:

> the bandwidth that will allow you to transmit the amount of data you need at maximum capacity;

> the speed that will determine how fast and the quality with which you can upload or download data and information from the network

> And to end the latency, a normal internet latency is essential to determine how long it will take for information to get from a device to a receiver.


How does latency affect connection speed?

Internet connection speed influences latency once it exceeds a certain range.

If, for example, you have an Internet connection of 1 Mbps and you compare it with a 100 Mbps connection, depending on the data package that is sent, the speed will be better or not.

There are other factors that are also important when talking about latency, such as being connected to the Internet by Wi-fi or through cable, if you use fiber optic service or the distance between your computer, phone, tablet and the router etc.

Connection latency is also the sum of other delay issues:

– Processing: is the time it takes for the routers to examine the header and, at the same time, the response to determine where to send any data packet by checking their routing tables beforehand.

– De queue: is the waiting time for the data packet to be transmitted through a physical link.

It should be noted that it is not possible to know in advance if there is going to be a queue delay or not, since it changes in real time.

– Transmission: is the time it takes for the data packet to reach the next node or other final destination.

– Propagation: is the time it takes for a bit to propagate from one source point to another destination point.

The speed of the bit depends on the physical medium through which it is transported and is always less than or equal to the speed of light.

The total delay is the sum of all the delays defined above.


How does latency affect IP telephony?

Latency is the time that passes between the sending of data (audio in telephony) and its reception by the receiver.

In other words, in telecommunications it is the delay between the moment I speak and the moment my interlocutor hears my voice.

All stages of the transport of “digital” voice through the internet network can affect the total latency:

Voice encoding and packaging, packet queues, number of network elements through which the packet must pass (the more elements, the longer the path…), as well as the power of the transmission rate. transmission.

We will identify latency problems with our IP telephony when during our telephone conversations we hear echoes and gaps (connection cuts or loss of information).

In any case, you can take a look at the following table where we show other possible connection problems that you may be experiencing during your calls and their cause:


latency online


How does latency affect a business?

Experiencing high latency during company communications negatively affects the quality of voice and video calls, making them very difficult.

When these communications are made with clients or potential clients of a company, it can make it impossible to have a conversation and the receiver gets desperate and ends up hanging up.

Latency can therefore impact a company’s sales success.
High latency, what factors influence?

In this section of the article “What is latency and how does it affect IP voice”, we will break down the factors that negatively influence causing a high latency or very high latency of the connection.

When there are voice delay and echo problems in a call through VoIP, you should take into account several indicators that may be negatively affecting the high latency of your internet connection.

Take a look at the factors that will help you find the solution:

– The quality of your Internet connection, ISP or VoIP provider:

You will not get the same latency connecting to a fiber optic network as connecting to ADSL or similar technologies.

The exact same thing happens with wireless connections, since a 4G connection will have lower latency than a 3G connection. The better the quality of the internet network, the lower the latency.

– The distance between your computer and the computer or server you are trying to connect to:

The more distance there is between them, the more time it will take to establish the connection and, therefore, the latency will be higher.

– The bandwidth and size of the packets that are sent:

The size of the packages is conditioned by the bandwidth that we have. It would not be possible to send packets larger than the throughput that the connection can support.

With higher bandwidth, larger packets can be sent in less time.

– Check the voice encapsulation technology of your VoIP application (codec):

With VoIP, sound quality also depends on the codec, the device used to encapsulate the communication and transmit it over the Internet.

VoIP operators usually use older codecs, such as G711 or G729, which are quite sensitive to variations in the speed of the Internet connection and this causes cuts and noise.

These consume more bandwidth and can have longer response times.

– The quality of service configuration:
The quality of service (OoS) configuration allows you to prioritize the bandwidth for certain devices or data, having to prioritize.

You must ensure that the VoIP is the first in the use of bandwidth.

– The ability of the router to process the packets that are transmitted:

The device you use can condition the response times of the internet connection. It can both positively and negatively influence latency.

– Use obsolete terminals:

Having verified that bandwidth is not the issue, you now need to take a look at the hardware. A good option is to update the router or check that the cables, modems and ports are not damaged.

Also, you should not forget to check the status of the headphones and the microphone.

– Use low performance headphones:

Pay attention to the latter, there are times when your interlocutor cannot hear you correctly due to noise and echoes and even then the problem is not the high latency or very high latency of your internet connection.

Keep in mind that in this case it may be a problem with the headphones.

When the work environment is noisy (such as in a call center, an open space or when you are traveling on business), the conversation can be disturbed by these ambient noises.

In addition, sounds can be perceived by the interlocutor as distant when using a jack cable.

For this reason, for VoIP calls it is recommended to use a headset or USB headset, if possible, that has a noise reduction option, to ensure the comfort of the call.

– Use low power devices:

The cuts, delays and robotic voice during a conversation, can also be caused by the slowness of the terminal or computer that you are using to communicate.

VoIP software needs some RAM memory to work properly, especially if it is used at the same time as other computer programs.

The minimum RAM memory for a computer should be 8GB, although there is also the option of using VoIP software without opening too many programs at once.


Latency test, what internet latency do I have?

As we saw in the previous section, one of the factors that can influence the quality of IP telephony calls is the instability of the network, which gives rise to communication latency.

To check the status of your internet connection, you can use the GESDITEL latency test.

The GESDITEL latency test is an online tool that will offer an immediate result, indicating the parameters of ping, fluctuation and data upload and download speed.

Follow the steps below:

– Access the tool through the following link: Latency Test

– On the main screen, you will have the option to select your internet provider with the dropdown or allow the system to detect it automatically.

Once you verify that the provider is correct, click on start:


latency very high


– Immediately, you will see the tool begin to measure the data:


what latency is good


– When finished, it will offer a summary report of the collected data: connection fluctuation, ping (which measures high or low latency) and data upload and download speed.


internet latency


In the next section, we will show you how to interpret this data and what latency is good for your company’s communications network.


What latency is good for VoIP telephony?

In this section of the article “What is latency and how does it affect IP voice”, we will define what latency is good for the use of IP telephony communications in companies.

Since internet connection latency is measured in milliseconds, we recognize that a good latency for VoIP communication should be 60ms or even lower if possible.

If the normal internet latency should be about 60 ms, any value higher than this will be a problem for a company’s communications, since it will negatively affect the quality of the calls.

How to achieve low latency and improve VoIP connections?

– Connecting to a local server:
Avoid servers located on other continents, as the greater the distance, the higher the latency.

You should also take into account server state.

If the server you are connected to is in high demand or is undergoing maintenance, it will cause delays in your internet connection. In that case, it would be best to change the server.

– Checking the intensity of the Wi-Fi signal:
If your means of connection is through a Wi-Fi signal, the coverage and intensity of this signal must be adequate to have a powerful and stable connection.

To achieve this, you must place the router in a place where there are no obstacles that interfere or block the signal, avoid: mirrors, bluetooth devices, baby monitors, surfaces metal etc.

Increase Wi-Fi signal strength and extend your wireless coverage to every corner of the company using Wi-Fi repeaters, especially suitable for large spaces with very thick walls and floors.

– Keeping equipment updated:
The capacity of the equipment with which you connect to the internet also influences latency.

Your computer, tablet, mobile, telephone… must be up to date, free of viruses and malware that may affect its performance and the capacity of your connection.

Keep devices up to date with the latest version available and frequently check that they are free of security threats.

Please note that the router and network card must also be up to date.

– Limiting network consumption:
Another way to improve latency is to prevent multiple computers from connecting to the network simultaneously, as this can overwhelm the network and impair the connection.

Keep all infrequently used equipment offline.

If you connected via fiber optics, you would not have this limitation, since fiber allows a greater number of devices to connect to the same network.

You should also apply this recommendation if you have many active programs executing heavy tasks such as uploading and downloading files.

To reduce latency, you should close programs and applications that consume too much bandwidth.

– Other tips that can help you:

If after reviewing and reconfiguring all of the above you still don’t have a perfect connection, try the following tips that may help:

> Reconfigure your antivirus to open ports and allow the use of VoIP software.

> Reduce the use of applications and disconnect all those devices that are not in use.

> Whenever possible, use a cable line before Wi-Fi, this is without a doubt the best recommendation of all.</strong >

> If this solution still does not lower your latency, you must connect with the internet provider, since it is the only one that can modify the route that our router follows until it reaches the internet.

> If your operator cannot modify it, you should look for other fiber optic internet connectivity options if possible.


So far, everything you need to know about “What is latency and how does it affect IP voice”. Pay attention to all the factors that have been identified and explained as negative for your connection.

Don’t let these little inconveniences harm the quality of your company’s communications.

If you are interested in GESDITEL telecommunications solutions for companies, do not hesitate to contact us and we will advise you on everything you need.

Still not clear? Improving the telecommunications of your company is in your hand, you are just one step away from achieving it, CONTACT US!

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Por: Nati CaballeroPublicado el: 9 de septiembre de 2022