What is the difference between ping and jitter?

When it comes to the speed of your internet there are factors that are important, the download speed (Downstream) and the upload speed (Upstream). Have you heard of ping or jitter but have no idea what these terms mean? So here  is the difference between ping and jitter.

What is the ping?

Ping (a term derived from the acronym for P acket I nter n et R oper , which can mean “Network packet finder or sniffer” ,  is a software management utility) used to test the reachability of a  host  on a network.  computer network  that uses the IP protocol  .

The origin of the name is attributed to the similarity between the operation of the ping and that of an  under water sonar that, to detect objects that are underwater, sends sound impulses and then listens for the return echo. Ping measures the round-trip time of packets sent from the source host to a destination server.

In other words, it is used to measure the time in milliseconds  used by one or more  ICMP packets   to reach a certain network device and return to the origin. For example, a ping of 100  ms (0.1 seconds) indicates that it took 50 ms to reach a certain destination and that it took another 50 ms to return to the source.

The ping typically reports any errors, packet loss, and a statistical summary of the results, generally including the minimum, maximum, and average round-trip times, as well as standard deviation from the mean . The ping, therefore, does not depend on the download and upload speed  of your internet connection .

It depends on the type of connection used (that is, if it is ADSL  ,  fiber optic  or  3G  /  4G  /  5G , for example) and only allows to verify the existence or accessibility of another server by measuring the transmission latencies in the network considered. In general, an acceptable ping value is less than 60 ms.

What is Jitter?

In a  computer network , jitter (pronounced  gìtter ) indicates the statistical variation in  milliseconds  of the reception delay of the  transmitted packet . That is, the jitter indicates the change in ping and can essentially be represented visually as the distance between the various packets that are sent from a source to a destination.

For example, if each packet sent from point A to point B takes the same amount of time to travel, then there will be no jitter in this case . However, if the delivery times of the packages sent from point A to point B vary, then there will be some instability in this other case.

Regardless of the network used, a jitter of less than 30 ms is considered an acceptable value.

Difference between Ping and Jitter

Both ping and jitter are synonymous with the quality of a certain internet connection and the lower its value, the better the connection in question. When a site like  Amazon  loads in the  browser , the data sent by the  server doesn’t necessarily have to come in a specific order.

It’s like when you put together a puzzle, it doesn’t matter which piece you put first and which one you put last , the important thing is to put all the pieces together to get the final image. If, for example, both ping and jitter are high, it will slow down the page load, but eventually the page will end up showing on the screen .

In fact, missing data can be retrieved from the server after sending it later. However, when there is live audio and / or video communication (streaming) , such as with a phone call via VoIP  or playing  online games , ping and jitter play a fundamental role .

In these cases, the data sent by the server must necessarily arrive in a precise order, otherwise, if any data arrives late, due to too high ping and / or jitter values, it can no longer be used. In practice, this all translates into problems like audio and / or video interruptions during a video call, for example.