Minimum Internet Speed Requirements for Streaming TV Services

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Minimum Internet Speed Requirements for Streaming TV Services
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If you’re thinking about canceling cable or satellite TV to sign up for an affordable live TV streaming service, you’ll want to be aware of the minimum internet speed requirements.

For a quality streaming experience that’s free of buffering and freezing, a high-speed internet connection is necessary.

How Many Mbps Do I Need to Stream?

Clark.com checked with YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, AT&T TV Now, fuboTV and other streaming providers to find out each service’s minimum recommended download speed.

We learned that the magic number is usually in the neighborhood of 10 Mbps (megabits per second):

Live TV Streaming Services

  • AT&T TV Now: Speeds of at least 12 Mbps per stream deliver the best quality
  • Frndly TV: 5 Mbps for a single HD stream and 1.5 Mbps for a single SD stream
  • fuboTV: Between 3 Mbps and 25 Mbps depending on the resolution
  • Hulu + Live TV: 8 Mbps or higher for a reliable, high-quality viewing experience; multiple concurrent streams may require higher bandwidth
  • Philo: 3 Mbps for SD quality, 7 Mbps for one HD stream and 13 Mbps for reliable HD streaming with multiple streams
  • Sling TV: 5 Mbps for a single stream of video content on a TV, PC or Mac; 25 Mbps for households that maintain internet use on multiple devices
  • YouTube TV: 3 Mbps for SD quality, 7 Mbps for one HD stream and 13 Mbps for reliable HD streaming with multiple streams

Other Video Streaming Services 

  • Amazon Prime Video: 3 Mbps for SD quality, 5 Mbps for HD quality and 25 Mbps for Ultra HD quality
  • Disney+: 5 Mbps for HD content and 25 Mbps for 4K UHD content
  • HBO Max: Minimum download speed of 5 Mbps
  • Hulu: 1.5 Mbps for streaming SD videos and 3 Mbps or higher for HD videos
  • Netflix: 3 Mbps for SD quality, 5 Mbps for HD quality and 25 Mbps for Ultra HD quality
  • Peacock: At least 2.5 Mbps for a single stream

Speed Test: How to Check Your Internet Download Speed

Now that you know the recommendations, go to SpeedTest.net or SpeedOf.Me to test your download speed. You can also compare those results to Fast.com, a similar tool that’s powered by Netflix.

If your internet is slower than what you’re paying for, contact your internet provider and see what they can do.

When I called my internet service provider and gave them the results from SpeedTest.net, they sent someone out to my house to troubleshoot my internet problems free of charge.

Ready to take the next step? Compare your options in Team Clark’s guide to the best live TV streaming plans and deals!

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