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The scenario is common in this Internet age. The family gets together to watch the latest movie on Netflix, only to have the viewing experience spoiled by video buffering and stuttering. You check the Internet speed at your house, and the bandwidth looks fine. So what gives?
Well, the problem might be with your home network. After looking at your router management software you see that everyone has their smartphone, tablet, and laptop simultaneously active on the network. The Netflix movie you are watching can’t get enough bandwidth to stream properly, forcing you to deal with buffering and poor video resolution.
What steps can you take to optimize the performance of your home network?
Limit the Number of Devices active on your Network
An easy way to maximize bandwidth before streaming a movie or TV show is to limit the number of devices on your network. Is Billy in the basement playing Call of Duty online with his friends? Great, kick his PS4 off the router and make him finish his homework!
Remember that even if you are paying extra for a 20 Mbps Internet service, all the devices on your Home WiFi network share the same bandwidth. It is important to manage network connections for the best possible media streaming performance.
Upgrade your Router to Optimize Streaming
Investing in a better router gives you more options to boost streaming performance on your WiFi network. Consider spending extra for a dual band router, as it provides a 5 GHz network with the extra bandwidth suitable for watching movies online. Devices performing normal Internet activities like email and web browsing can use the router’s 2.4 GHz network freeing up the 5 GHz band for streaming activity.
Some high-end routers allow you to optimize the wireless connection for certain devices on your network. So your media streaming devices get the extra bandwidth they need for movie watching without buffering and video stuttering. Learning how to manage your router properly pays off with better Internet performance for everyone.
Ultimately, video buffering doesn’t have to be a problem with a fast Internet connection. Make it a point to limit the number of devices on your network when streaming rich media content. Additionally, invest in a better router — preferably dual band — to give you more flexibility when managing your home network.
Paul Williams brings a wide range of experiences to his writing. He worked extensively in technology, as a software engineer, technical writer, and now a technology writer. Known as the leader of one of the top American Spacerock bands, his forward-looking music continues to be heard all over the world.