Speed Up Your Netflix Connection

Do you suffer from long loading times and constant buffering interruptions when trying to watch movies or TV shows on Netflix? It can be so frustrating. You settle down to watch a movie only to be met with the spinning-wheel-of-death telling you that the movie is ‘buffering’ (which is just a fancy term for loading).

One thing to note is that it is likely that the problem is most likely with your set up rather than Netflix itself. Which is actually a good thing because it means there are things you can do to try and improve it. There are also settings within Netflix itself that can make a bit of a difference.

With that in mind, here are a few things you can try to hopefully speed up your Netflix loading times and get rid of the frozen screen issues.

Check your Netflix settings match your Broadband

Netflix has the ability to provide you with a 4K quality streaming service which is great for those who own the latest TV that supports 4K. Having the right technology to view broadcast on but does your broadband connecting have what it takes to keep up?

What you need to do is check what download speeds your broadband package gives you. That will determine what setting you are better choosing to help Netflix work efficiently. Netflix recommends the following download speeds for different levels of viewing quality:

Download speed Viewing Quality
0.5 Mbps (Megabits Per Second) Minimum broadband connection speed for Netflix to work
1.5 Mbps Netflix recommended broadband connection speed
3 Mbps Netflix recommendation for SD quality viewing
5 Mbps Netflix recommendation HD quality viewing
25 Mbps Netflix recommendation 4K quality viewing

 

This table should help you understand what your broadband connection will allow Netflix to provide without problems. You can alter the settings within Netflix to match your broadband by heading to Your Account then find Playback Settings in there. When you click on Playback Settings you will be shown various options.

If you have a smaller broadband package try choosing the Low option and see how you get on. If that works fine you can always trial how it works on the Medium setting to help increase your viewing quality. If it starts to cause issues change it back to Low.

Netflix have created a great simple tool that shows you what download speeds you are getting. If you would like to check what your download speeds are you can carry out a speed test by clicking here.

Check what is using your network

If you are like a lot of houses you probably have more than one device connected to your broadband at the same time. Having numerous devices connected to your broadband at once is obviously going to cause a strain on your connection speeds.

So before you settle down to watch your favourite TV show or that movie you’ve been dying to watch be sure to disconnected any other devices that aren’t being used from your broadband / Wi-Fi connection.

Clear your device of unused sources

If you are streaming Netflix on your computer, tablet or phone etc., then make sure you close down any apps you aren’t using and any browser tabs you don’t need. If possible close everything apart from Netflix as this will free up any draining connections that could effect your streaming speeds.

Is your device tired?

If all your other efforts fail and you still can’t seem to speed up your Netflix’s streaming service and the image you are seeing isn’t quite as good as you would like maybe you need too assess your devices’ capability.

Some devices have built in caps on the resolution it can show and some older models of devices can simply not have the power to keep up with a demanding streaming process. It might be time to upgrade your device but be sure to look out for any resolution caps or you will be in the same boat as you started.

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Russ Ware

Russ has been testing, reviewing and writing guides for tech since the heady days of Windows 95 and the Sega Saturn. Working for international publications in both print and online, if it has LED's, a screen, beeps or has source code, Russ will want to master it (and very likely take it apart to see how it works...)

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