If you want to check how fast (or slow) your internet is, the usual method is to go to speedtest.net, fast.com, or any of the bajillion other internet speed test sites. But if you have a Mac running macOS Monterey, you don’t need to visit any website to check your internet speed. There’s now a built-in tool in macOS, which lets you test your connection speed right from Terminal itself.
Why use Terminal over an internet speed test website
There are a few big advantages to trying a Terminal-based speed test on your Mac. The biggest of these is that you aren’t loading an ad-riddled website that has a negative impact on your privacy and battery life. Depending on how your computer is performing, Terminal is arguably a lot faster than using a browser, so the overall time taken to start the speed test is a shade lower.
Other than that, the Terminal method is also just easy to execute. It requires absolutely no knowledge of coding or any special technical skills, which is a big plus for lots of people; it allows those who aren’t technically inclined an opportunity to try Terminal, which may go a long way towards trying other useful commands, like one that lets you check all installed apps on your Mac or another one to set a sleep timer.
How to use Terminal to test your internet speeds
To use this feature, open Terminal on your Mac. If you’re having trouble finding the app, you can press Command + Space Bar to open Spotlight search and type Terminal. Once Terminal is open, type networkQuality (capitalisation is unnecessary) and press Enter.
Now, as long as your Mac is connected to the internet and running macOS Monterey, the speed test will begin. You’ll see a live readout of your download and upload speeds while the test is running. Once it’s done, Terminal will show the results under the ==== SUMMARY ==== heading.
This command runs both upload and download speed tests simultaneously, but if you want to run these one after another, you can use the Terminal command networkQuality -s. This command will run the download speed test first and then check your upload speeds. The results are unaffected by the test.