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Does your family ever watch TV shows or movies via an internet connection? I know my family does! Many households now access cable TV and streaming services such as Hulu and Netlflix, use the internet to stream shows. There are many benefits to streaming TV shows and movies from the convenience of your phone, but there is one major downside; video quality. Internet speed plays a large part in how good the video quality will be. We're going to share some helpful tips on how to improve your internet speed for better video quality so you can enjoy streaming shows and movies at home.
Your internet connection is what makes it possible for you to watch shows from your computer, phone, tablet, and television. But if something is wrong, you experience slowness or interruptions. No one wants to be watching a show and just when it gets exciting, it stops because your internet slows down or quits.
Test Your Connection
Your first step is to make sure you have a strong internet connection – this will ensure that your video quality is high and won't be interrupted by buffering or loading screens. Test your connection at Speedcheck. It's a free service to test your upload and download speed.
Some things that affect your internet speed includes:
Your internet service.
Talk to your internet provider about upgrading to a faster service. They can also troubleshoot problems that may be slowing your service down.
If you use Wifi in your home to access the internet for televisions and devices, the farther you get from the modem the weaker your connection gets. You may want to get some boosters/extenders to strengthen the signal.
As modems, extenders, and other electronic equipment they can lose their ability to work efficiently. Some can may become obsolete as new technology replaces old. These older devices can't update to new speeds. Nor, are they as reliable losing speed or connection entirely.
You need different minimum speeds to be able to watch different qualities of shows. The higher quality of the video, the more speed you need for the data to stream seamlessly. Watching your favorite movie in HD needs a better speed than in SD. Different streaming services have recommended what speed you need:
- 0.5 Mbps per second – Required broadband connection speed
- 1 Mbps per second – Recommended broadband connection speed
- 3 Mbps per second – Recommended for SD quality
- 5 Mbps per second – Recommended for HD quality
- 25 Mbps per second – Recommended for Ultra HD quality
- 3 Mbps for the Hulu streaming library
- 8 Mbps for live streams
- 16 Mbps for 4K content
5 Mbps of download speeds for HD content, and 25 Mbps for 4K.
Improved Speed = Improved Video Quality
A video is made up of data. Each of those bits of data makes its way to your device through your internet connection. If something is slowing it down, that data gets squeezed through smaller access. It's like comparing water from a faucet. It takes forever to fill a sink by just water dripping compared to when you turn the faucet fully open. The same is true of the internet. But there are some ways you can maximize it.
Close other Programs or Apps
Your computer or device will probably stream a show better when you close the other programs or apps running. Just like your brain works less efficiently when you multi-task, so do your devices and computer.
You may also notice changes in video quality during busy times in your home and neighborhood. The more people using the internet at the same time in your home and area can slow down connection speed. If others in your house are downloading files, playing video games, and watching a movie when you are, the speed for all of you may be slower.
Update your Equipment
As we said earlier devices become outdated. They also just wear out sometimes. Technology is always advancing and our devices must keep up if we want to keep using apps and services that are built with this newest technology. I've had my experience using an old tablet that quit working efficiently because applications were more advanced than my tablet and updates made them impossible to use. If you are experiencing slow internet, check with your internet provider. If you are using their modem, they may need to replace it with a new one. But they won't call you and tell you, of course. This exact thing happened with our modem a few months ago.
Hopefully, this helps you to better enjoy your next movie night with quality speed internet. The big takeaway is don't just assume what you have is what you get. There are things both you and your internet provider can do to improve your internet speed.