Over the past few years, thanks in part to the COVID-19 virus, a lot of Americans have fundamentally changed their leisurely habits. They’re spending less time going out and more time at home. If you’ve invested in the latest technology for your home entertainment center, you probably have a 4K Ultra High-Definition (UHD) television.

The new 4K televisions offer much clearer pictures with better resolution than HD TVs. They also require a lot more bandwidth if you’re planning to stream movies or play game and get the most from your investment.

Streaming Speeds Depend on the Streaming Service

When we talk about internet speeds, we’re measuring bitrate. Bitrate is the amount of information that is transmitted. Usually, bitrate is expressed in bits per second (bps). When it comes to streaming music, video or games, the measurement is often in megabits per second (Mbps) or millions of bits per second.

Each of the major content-streaming platforms have slightly different streaming requirements, and with speeds up to 2.5 Gbps, Hunter Communications makes sure you can stream anything!

Streaming speeds matter because the maximum sustainable bandwidth you have available determines the quality of the video you experience. If you have slow internet and try to stream a movie, you may have lower picture quality, experience lagging and freezing, or you may not be able to play the movie at all.

Is Your Current Internet Service Fast Enough to Stream in 4K?

Different types of internet connections offer different speeds, and every high-speed internet connection should, by itself, be fast enough to stream 4K movies and games. The problem is that very few home networks dedicate all their bandwidth to just one source.

Many homes have a variety of devices on the network at once. A Smart TV is just one device. Cell phones on the home Wi-Fi network, smart speakers, internet-connected thermostats and security systems, and other devices all tap into and share the network.  That means your 4K TV may get a smaller share of what’s left.

If you have multiple devices in your home and expect that multiple people will be streaming at the same time, you might want to consider having internet service with gigabit download speeds. An example would be if you want to stream a football game on your 4K television while one child watches cartoons on Netflix and another is playing Fortnite online with friends at the same time.

What Else Can Impact Download Speeds?

Devices in your home aren’t the only things that can impact your ability to get the most out of your 4K UHD television. If you have a cable or DSL broadband connection, other factors you can’t control can slow down your network.

Copper-wire based internet services like cable and DSL share available bandwidth with other users in the area. That means that if your neighbors are streaming or gaming it can hurt the resolution on your television.

Do You Need a Broadband Upgrade in Oregon and Northern California?

Deciding on the internet speed you need isn’t as simple as it looks. Some internet service providers advertise speeds “up to” a certain amount that are rarely achieved or maintained for long stretches. This is especially true in peak hours when a lot of people are using the network at the same time.

You can test your current internet speed using tools like the Ookla Speedtest and Fast.com. These popular tools can help you make an informed decision about your internet speed.

If you want faster, more reliable internet service in Oregon or Northern California, Hunter Communications can help.

Our fiber-optic internet service offers you the best connection for browsing, streaming and gaming without any buffering or lagging. We also offer a variety of packages that provide great value. Call us today at 541-772-9282 to find out more.