Controling your data & speed of your streaming services

Connecta – by Abilash (Courtesy from Netflix)

Streaming your favorite series or movies on online streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney + chews-up more data and your limited bandwidth than you think, especially when it comes to HD or Ultra HD content. If you’re dealing with data caps and limited bandwidth, then it’s even more important to pay attention to how much data and the speed you’re consuming when using streaming services.

Luckily you’re your streaming service providers have solutions to resolve head-scratching problems. There are settings you can adjust within your streaming service account, browser or through the applications that will mitigate your data usage, and assist in seamless streaming content. Adjusting the playback setting does come with a drawback of tweaking the video and audio quality, but it’s about what you want to forgo.

However, the decision also drills down to the TV or the device that you are using for streaming services. In a situation where your TV resolution is 32 inch and plays HD, then adjusting the setting to medium or 720p will not greatly result in a quality drop and at the same time you may not experience buffer as this uses less bandwidth.

Leaving it on “Auto” will let your streaming service decide what quality setting is best and based on your internet speed. This isn’t ideal if you have limited data and faster speed. In all streaming services, you can choose between Low, Medium, and High-quality in playback video settings.

Below are some of the popular streaming services and the steps to manage the video playback.

Control Netflix data usage

Adjust your Netflix data usage settings

Data usage settings only apply to the Netflix profile you set them from, meaning you can have different data usage settings for each profile on your account. If you are concerned about the total amount of data that Netflix uses, be sure to repeat the steps below for each profile.

  1. Sign in to Netflix.com.
  2. Select the profile you’d like to change your data usage settings for.

NOTE: Data usage settings cannot be adjusted from a Kids profile.

3. Select Account.

4. Now click your profile name at the top-right of the screen. From                the drop-down box, choose Your Account, so you can get into the settings                for your profile.

5. Scroll Down and Choose Playback Settings. Toward the bottom of                             the page, under the My Profile header, you’ll find an option for “Playback                 settings.” Click that to make your choice.

6. Select your desired data usage setting.

NOTE: Netflix offers four data usage settings to choose from:

  •  Low – 0.3 GB per hour per device
  • Medium – SD: 0.7 GB per hour per device
  • High – Best video quality, up to 3 GB per hour per device for HD, and 7 GB per hour per device for Ultra HD
  • Auto – Adjusts automatically to deliver the highest possible quality, based on your current internet connection speed

7. Select Save. Your changes will take effect within 8 hours.

Change Stream and Download Quality for Amazon Prime Video

When using the Prime Video app, you have the choice to watch the video stream online or download it to your device for watching later. In both the cases, you can choose the quality of the video that can be streamed or downloaded to your device. Here is how:

  1. Launch the Prime Video app.
  2. Tap on the menu icon and select Settingsfrom the menu.
  3. On the Amazon Video Settingsscreen tap on Stream & Download
  4. On the Stream & Downloadscreen, you can tap on Streaming Quality and Download Quality to change the respective video qualities.
  5. You can choose the video quality from data saver, good, better, best or the highest quality possible.

 

If you choose the highest quality, you should make sure that you have a really fast internet connection. An internet connection of around 8 Mbps minimum will be good enough for watching these movies without having to sit down and waste your time staring at that spinning circle that shows that video is buffering. If the movie is buffering a lot, perhaps you can choose to download it and watch it later when it has finally finished downloading completely.