Nowadays, the concept of television has become quite dynamic and fluid. Where before you could only watch television on your living room TV set using a dedicated cable or satellite connection, things have changed in this era. Today, you can indulge in your favorite movies and TV shows in several different ways. One of these modes of TV viewing, backed by popular demand, is streaming TV.
Unlike cable or satellite, streaming TV delivers video-on-demand and a modicum of live programming to your devices over the internet. In other words, you only need a high-speed internet connection like Cox internet and a Wi-Fi-enabled device like a smartphone or laptop to stream videos online, free or paid, depending on the streaming platform.
Since internet technology isn’t perfect yet, so chances are that you may suffer from low streaming or buffering issues when you’re watching a video online. These are the absolute worst! Why? Because they break your flow and disrupt your viewing experience. If you have been facing lags while streaming, then here are a few tips and tricks that you can try to evade these issues altogether. Here’s the good news: You don’t need to invest a lot of bucks to implement these hacks.
Enough with the suspense. Let’s begin.
Re-Position Your Router
A router is a core component of an in-home network. It emits Wi-Fi throughout the vicinity and monitors the data traffic. If you’re streaming a video online using Wi-Fi and the signals are dropping in and out, then there is a quick hack you can employ to improve the signal reception. One, you can take your streaming device and sit closer to the router for an uninterrupted flow of data. Or, two, you can change the placement of the router itself and move it to an open, centralized area, so the signals can travel optimally in all directions. This will help you avoid low steaming issues.
Change the Wi-Fi Channel
Most of the routers are set on the 2.4 GHz frequency band by default. Though this standard band delivers faster signal speed, it is also pretty congested on account of being used by multiple wireless devices in the house, including baby monitors. Streaming on the 2.4 GHz frequency band might hamper your experience. So, this is what you can do about it: Head into the router’s configuration settings and switch the wireless band from 2.4 GHz to 5 GHz. The benefit of doing this switch will be that you can surf the web on the less crowded channel and enjoy consistent online video streaming, which is what we all want at the end of the day.
Opt for a Direct Wired Connection
Cables are cumbersome, without a doubt. They limit mobility and dial down signal potency after a distance. Yet, they win over Wi-Fi. Why? Because of the lack of interference. Yes, your wireless network may be susceptible to external obstructions, but a wired network ensures a one-on-one signal transmission. So, try switching to Ethernet when you’re streaming a video online and you’ll successfully evade the drop in streaming quality. Plug one end of the Ethernet into the back of your router/modem and the other end into your streaming laptop, and your streaming performance will see a significant boost. Note: This method might not work if you are streaming on a smartphone or another device without an Ethernet port.
Shrug Off Piggybacking Users
How is your network security? Is it good or subpar? Because if it is not good, then your network is the talk of the cybercrime town. Yes, an unprotected internet connection is like an unlocked front door. Anyone can enter through it and piggyback on your Wi-Fi, slowing down everything for you, while you’re streaming the new special on Amazon Prime Video. So, the right thing to do here is to safeguard your internet with a tough-as-nails password. This will not only kick out the uninvited users mooching off your Wi-Fi but also speed up your connection for seamless streaming.
Disable Competing Devices
There is a high probability that the device on which you’re streaming Netflix at the moment is not the only one connected to your main internet connection. Everything from your partner’s laptop to your smart thermostat requires some form of internet access. Altogether, these devices eat up your allocated bandwidth and eventually, overwhelm your in-home network, not leaving enough room for your streaming. So, the wise step you can take here is to disable all the unnecessary devices, programs, and background applications connected to the Wi-Fi to relieve internet speed and stream without buffering.
Downgrade Your Streaming Resolution
Streaming in 4K UHD might give you a larger-than-life video quality that blows your mind away but it also bears down on your internet connection, unlike anything. For users who live from data cap to data cap, this works wonders. All you have to do is open the settings of the streaming platform you are utilizing, and change the video resolution from 4K to let’s say, 720p, which is still HD and doesn’t result in a poor streaming experience, pinned by the endless loading wheel.
Upgrade Your Internet Plan
Last but certainly not least, you can always upgrade your internet plan to avoid low streaming online. If, for instance, you have a 25 Mbps internet plan and multiple users in your household, then upgrading to a 50 Mbps or even 100 Mbps internet plan will give you all the speed you need for reliable streaming. Keep an eye out for data, too. If your current plan has data caps, which can bottleneck your internet connection at the end of the month, then, you can opt for an unlimited data plan to avert this problem once and for all.
Nothing is more frustrating than having your streaming TV experience derailed by a lagging internet. To avoid low streaming, you can try the aforementioned tips and tricks to make a significant difference in the state and stability of your in-home network. Say goodbye to buffering starting today!