Internet Speed Requirements for Video Streaming

To understand what internet speed is required for video streaming, we need to begin to take a look at a few aspects regarding streaming video. The first one is a basic question to help us understand “What is video streaming?”. Another important aspect to look at is the different types of video streaming.

What Is Video Streaming?

Technically speaking streaming video, or also¬† known as streaming media, is content sent in compressed form over the Internet and displayed by the viewer in real time. If you use streaming video you don’t have to wait to download a file to play it. Instead of waiting for the complete media file to download, the media is sent in a continuous stream of data and is played as it arrives. Streaming video is usually sent from prerecorded video files, but can be distributed as part of a live broadcast “feed.” In a live broadcast, the video signal is converted into a compressed digital signal and transmitted from a special Web server that is able to do multicast, sending the same media file to multiple users at the same time.

Media Player

For a good display of your (live) streaming video to work you need a streaming media player. A media player is a special program that is installed on your computer, laptop, network media tank or gaming console, which uncompresses and sends video data to the display (monitor or tv screen) and the audio data to your speakers. The media player can be either part of a browser or downloaded as a unique software tool. Some examples of streaming video media players and/or streaming video services are : Windows Media Player, Chromecast, Quicktime, Youtube, Vimeo, Popcornhour, HDX,¬†Netflix, Hulu, Vudu, etc. It’s always best to make sure you have the latest version of your media player. So upgrade your browser and software whenever possible.

Requirements Video Streaming

The quality of the video you’re trying to watch has a huge impact on the exact requirements. The higher the quality of the video stream, the higher the need for a large broadband internet connection. For example looking at a HD (high definition) video from Youtube, requires you to have a better internet connection then a low-quality video from Youtube. You could always wait to have the streaming video loaded in cache, but this will take a lot longer with a slow internet connection and you don’t want to have to wait while the movie loads, or buffers. You definitely don’t want the movie to stop every few minutes to load again.

For looking at normal quality video streaming, you probably can use a 500 kbps or 1 Mbps internet speed connection. High quality video streaming requires you to have a 2-3 Mbps internet connection. If you want to look at HD video streaming, you would probably require a good 5-6 Mbps internet connection.

Video Streaming Services

For information about different video streaming services see the pages below:

Requirements for Live Streaming

For a good experience of other live streaming video services, you probably best can have a minimum download bandwidth of at least 500 Kbps or 1 Mbps. Although WiFi and Mobile networks can be used, the preferred connection will always be a wired connection. This is because of the bandwidth that fluctuates constantly on WiFi and Mobile networks.

Make sure you test your current internet speed with our Internet Speedometer.

Help Others!

Leave a comment if you know the exact internet speed required for a specific video streaming service. In this way you will help others make the right choice. Thanks!

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