If you are planning to quit your cable or satellite TV subscription for streaming services, you should know well that this would require a faster and more reliable internet connection. Slower internet speeds can be frustrating than ever when they hinder you from streaming your favorite movies and shows. You must be fully aware of the fact that is your current internet connection capable of handling a TV streaming service. Imagine while watching the most intense scene from your favorite TV show suddenly the internet starts buffering, leaving you in sheer disappointment and killing all the suspense and entertainment. Therefore, high-speed internet is extremely crucial to enjoy a seamless streaming experience. Since the faster the internet, the better would be your streaming quality.
However, it is not just about the download speeds, rather the reliability of your connection. Realizing the dire need for a fast internet connection for a smooth streaming experience, you need to consider the following aspects and follow these effective techniques to further improve your streaming speeds. Here we go!
Internet Speeds Required for Streaming
Generally speaking, you usually require download speeds of 20 to 25 Mbps to enjoy video streaming services including Netflix, Sling TV, and others in ultra-high definition quality. Speeds lower than this will work for SD or HD quality. However, in case of a greater number of users, you will need better speeds up to 50 Mbps. To check for your current internet speeds, you can run a speed test to know what download speeds you are experiencing.
Improving Streaming Speeds
The choice of the right internet provider is one of the crucial aspects to fulfill your streaming needs. For example, when I finally chose one of the Spectrum packages on offer at the time, all my worries about any slowdowns and connectivity issues just vanished. You should also bring into account the type of media you want to access. For instance, 4K TV shows need greater Mbps. If you have multiple users at home who need internet access for video streaming, you can choose an internet plan with strong in-home Wi-Fi networks so everyone can experience smooth and lag-free access.
Upgrading Your Current Internet Plan
If you are not satisfied with your current internet plan, you can always switch to better ones offering higher speeds. Many cable and fiber internet providers offer speeds up to 1 Gbps. However, download speeds of 100 Mbps are usually enough for HD streaming by multiple users. When it comes to upload speeds, they are not as impactful as download speeds for streaming.
Updating your Equipment
In case you have already subscribed to a fast internet connection but are still facing buffering problems, it might be time to upgrade your router or modem. The reason is that you might be using an older model that might be slowing the speed. You can purchase a better router or modem to enjoy enhanced speeds and save yourself from paying any rental equipment fee usually charged by your provider. You can also consider getting a dedicated streaming device like a Roku device. This prevents video streaming against any buffering due to other apps.
Switching to an Ethernet Connection
Once you have subscribed to the most appropriate internet plan with impressive download speeds and preferably no data caps, it is time to know some quick tips on how you can further improve your network speeds for an uninterrupted streaming experience. Make sure you have a good performing router or modem which can make use of the bandwidth provided by your ISP. If you are facing buffering issues while streaming videos online, try boosting the strength of your Wi-Fi signal. It is recommended that you try using an Ethernet cable connection. This is because the Wi-Fi signal strength might be weak at some places in your home or there might be some interference with the signals. So using a physical Ethernet connection might solve such issues.
Keep a Check for Internet Throttling
Many internet service providers usually put a limit on their data usage or might slow down their speeds during streaming or downloads of larger files. This is known as data throttling and is the case when a user exceeds the monthly data cap as imposed by the provider. If you are a heavy streamer, you must look out for internet plans with no data caps at a cost-effective price. This will save you from any additional charges in case you exceed the data limits. Streaming usually consumes much data so if you have multiple users at home, it is always better to opt for unlimited data plans.
Number of Users
It is obvious that the number of users watching Hulu or Netflix at a time does make a difference. Imagine one user watching Netflix compared to four users streaming simultaneously. Of course, the greater the number of users, the higher the chances of experiencing lags. A mere 100 Mbps internet plan might not be sufficient to facilitate four to five users for streaming at once. Therefore, choose a plan with higher speeds and unlimited data offer when more users will be using it for streaming purposes.
The Bottom Line
The aforementioned discussion clearly outlines the effect of internet speeds on your streaming experience and how important it is to ensure a steady and fast internet connection to make it possible for you to stream your favorite shows and movies. Generally speaking, some common streaming services like Netflix require nearly 5 Mbps for HD quality while Hulu needs at least 3 Mbps for HD videos. A speed test of your internet connection can provide you a good insight into whether your current provider is capable of supporting your streaming habits. You can also use the above-mentioned suggestions to further boost your internet speeds to enjoy seamless streaming.