With the advent of the internet, the number of video streaming platforms has increased. It is no wonder, hence, that the human desire for entertainment is pretty much satiated. But entertainment is a double-edged sword. If the entertainment stops, even for a second, the frustration is unbearable.
Imagine you’ve signed up for a streaming service, and found your favorite movie. You get down to watching it when suddenly the video starts buffering, or the video quality drops to pixelated screens. Yes, that’s the raw frustration I just talked about, and that’s what we’ll be trying to minimize in this blog.
Read on to find out pro-tips for a smoother streaming experience.
#1 Check if Streaming is Allowed on your Network
First off, if you’re connected to a network other than your home network, it’s highly likely that streaming apps are blocked. This happens mainly on public networks. If you’re in your school or your favorite coffee shop, you may want to ask the network administrator. If they don’t allow streaming, you’ll just have to shift to mobile data.
#2 Turn off extra devices
In case your streaming quality is dropping, the first thing to check is the number of devices connected to your home network.
If you have a lot of devices connected to your Wi-Fi, they’ll all be consuming bandwidth, leeching on the download speed. This can cause issues in internet connectivity and is a potent cause of slower or low-quality streaming.
#3 Use an Ethernet Cable
Sometimes, the reason isn’t the number of devices, or even internet speed, but rather a fluctuation in Wi-Fi signals. This can be seriously reduced by using an ethernet cable instead of a wireless connection.
The direct-wired connection between your router and device increases the internet speed, even when everything’s running well. There are often old routers in place that don’t support the latest improvements in speed. An ethernet cable can support up to 10Gbps internet speed, while the best router using the 802 technology is limited to 1.3Gbps.
Sure, the wires will make a bit of a mess, but they’ll definitely boost your internet connection speed, and hence your streaming smoother.
#4 Change placement of your Router
There are times when the problem isn’t a fluctuation of signals, rather a nosedive of your router signals. This means either the router is placed too far away, or there are too many obstructions in between, such as walls, cupboards, microwaves, refrigerators, etc.
So, if you can’t use an ethernet cable, the second-best option is moving the router around your home and see where the signals are stronger. If the connection is stabilized, chances are streaming quality will improve.
#5 Clear Cache Memory
Sometimes, though very rarely, the problem isn’t with the internet connectivity but with your device.
The surfing we do on our devices store very tiny bits of information on our device in the cache memory. This can sometimes get corrupted, or overloaded with data, and can cause the streaming app or website to respond slower.
The simplest solution to this is to delete your cache memory from your device, and your browser.
#6 Choose Low Video Quality
As abhorrent as this sounds, if you’re internet speed is severely slow, despite trying the steps above, you may just have to reduce the streaming quality.
Sometimes, a movie needs to be seen, even if it is not in HDR or 4K. A 720p might just do the trick. Simply because, 720p requires 5Mbps connection speed, while HDR or 4K requires a whopping 25Mbps.
#7 Use your Hard Disk
If you’re really the movie aficionado that just can’t bear low-quality playbacks – you might want to download the title you’re interested in, on your hard disk.
Without the streaming delays and internet connectivity problems, the streaming will be as smooth as the finest silk from China. If you put in the work, plan for downloads, and aren’t going for a spontaneous plan, this is the best way to go about it.
Since the streaming platforms are really big companies and studios these days, if the services aren’t working as they’re supposed to without intimation – the problem is probably at your end.
Check your internet connectivity, and try out the steps above, you’ll surely get a better streaming experience.