What Internet Speed Does Online Streaming Services require?

What Internet Speed Does Online Streaming Services require?

In the age of Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube a high-speed internet with unlimited data is an absolute necessity. Many people are cutting their cable cords just to get hands-on experience of those wonderful online streaming services. However, most of them are suffering from poor internet service from their providers. High-Speed Internet is an essential requirement for these online streaming services which certainly comes at a price. Since online streaming services require high-speed internet and have limited scope, they cost more than cable services, which come with endless entertainment options. Cable and internet together are more reasonable in terms of cost, quality and reliability, and on top of that, they offer better entertainment channels that are suitable for all age groups including children, youngsters and elderlies.

Still, if you’re a Netflix freak and want to get your hands on its latest shows as soon as they release then make sure to get a high-speed internet as well. The question here is what speed is sufficient for online streaming?  Tip number 1 – Never ask this question to your internet service provider. They will try to sell you the package with the highest speed i.e. the most expensive internet package. You can always get yourself a high-speed internet, as the providers are more than happy to upgrade the packages. However, getting them to downgrade your package is quite a task. I hope this post will equip you with all the information you need to pick the right internet package so that you can enjoy online streaming without paying much.

What speed is actually required for online streaming?

One can find several sources online informing of the ideal speeds for online streaming services. However, information coming from online streaming companies themselves holds more value. In its guidelines, Sling TV help center illustrates that:

  1. In order to stream videos on portable devices (phones and tablets, etc.), you need a constant speed of 3 Mbps or more.
  2. Single or multiple video streaming on TV or PC requires a relentless speed of 5 Mbps
  3. For a household with multiple users, a persistent speed of 25 Mbps is recommended for a smooth online streaming experience.

What is internet speed sufficient for HD stream?

Well, HD streaming indeed consumes more bandwidth as compared to other low-quality video streaming. Netflix has something to say about it. According to Netflix, each HD stream requires a minimum of 5 Mbps. If you are streaming HD in two screens at one place then you would need 10 Mbps speed. Nevertheless, Hulu offers better insights regarding internet speed requirements:

  1. 720p HD video stream needs 3 Mbps speed.
  2. 1080p HD video stream requires a minimum speed of 6 Mbps
  3. 4K ULTRA HD must need 13 Mbps speed for smooth continuity

So for two simultaneous 4K ULTRA streams, one should have at least 26 Mbps speed to enjoy entertainment at its best.

What about the internet speed for other web needs?

Certainly, surfing through platforms like Facebook doesn’t require a fast internet connection. No one in America is worried about their internet speeds for basic web surfing. However, online streaming and other massive bandwidth-consuming tasks are entailed with fast internet.

What speed should one have?

Internet speed is highly dependent on an individual’s needs. For an individual living alone, the internet need is much lower than a family with multiple internet users. Need my suggestion? Firstly, you need to know how many streams occur at a time, multiply it by five and then double it. For example, if there are two HD Streams, increasing with five leads to 10 Mbps. Double the 10 Mbps (i.e. 20 Mbps) to not encounter any difficulty with streaming. So, calculate your internet need accordingly.

Are you still facing Buffering issues?

In spite of purchasing the fastest internet plan, you might face speed lags and loading issues. Typically these issues occur because of your home network and streaming service. There are several ways to resolve buffering issues. Here are some ways to deal with them.

  1. Getting range extenders
  2. Replacing the router.

Walls and doors don’t allow the signals to reach to every corner of the house. Replacing your router to the center of the house will not let your Wi-Fi signals drop. Similarly, an extender can help you improve the quality of the signals so that you can connect your devices from anywhere in the house. Living in the era of high-speed internet, knowing your speed needs can help you save a lot on your internet bills.

Tom Spiggle
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