Roku Speed Test



Roku Speed Test



Minimal Internet Speed Requirements to Stream With Roku




How Fast Should My Internet Connection Be To Stream With Roku?


Roku recommends that you check with your individual streaming content providers for their recommended minimum broadband speeds for cable or DSL. Speeds can vary between streaming services based on encoding methods they use on their files.

A typical rule of thumb is a minimum of 1.5 Mbps is needed which is barely enough for a single standard definition (SD) stream. If you want to stream High Definition (HD) movies and TV shows, you will need at least 3 Mbps from your broadband provider.

4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) content requires an Internet connection that is a lot more faster.

Streaming content providers seem to encode their content differently. With some, you could end up needing a lot more bandwidth than with others to stream the same movies or shows.

Here are several of the more popular TV streaming services and their recommendations for each video resolution.



Netflix Streaming Speed for HD, SD and 4K
  • 3 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream SD quality
  • 5 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream HD quality
  • 25 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream 4K Ultra HD quality




  • 3 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream SD quality
  • 6 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream HD quality
  • 13 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream 4K Ultra HD quality



Vudu Internet Speed Required to Stream
  • 1 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream SD quality
  • 4.5 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream HD quality
  • 11 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream 4K Ultra HD quality



Amazon Video Internet Speed needed for streaming
  • 900 Kbits/sec - Needed To Stream SD quality
  • 3.5 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream HD quality



Playstation Vue Internet Speed needed for streaming
  • 10 Megabits per second - Recommended minimum per stream.
  • 50 Megabits per second - Optimal



Sling TV Internet Speed needed for streaming
  • 3 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream SD quality*
  • 5 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream HD quality*
  • 25 Megabits per second - Needed To Stream 4K Ultra HD quality*
*Note Sling and most live streaming services place a higher demand on your Internet connection. Unlike On Demand streaming channels, live TV does not have a buffer so LIVE streaming needs to have a steady constant connection speed that does not vary for best performance.


Internet Speed - You May Not Be Getting What You're Paying For

Internet speeds can often vary from what your paying for. That's why it is a really good idea to measure your actual speed since many factors can come into play when it comes to your Internet.

Old hardware and even faulty line drops from your cable company can introduce noise into the line which can cause errors and slowdowns and complete momentary disconnects to your Internet connection. This can greatly impact your streaming experience.

One of the easiest ways to check your Roku and your Internet for streaming is to add the Roku Speed Test channel. This will give you a true indication of just how fast your Internet is after it exits your WiFi Router.

If you read our article: "Your Next Media Streamer Should Have Ethernet" you will see there are many factors that can slow down your Internet connection if you are using WiFi. One of the largest of these is the distance between a WiFi Router and streaming devices.


How To Check Your Streaming Speed With The Roku Speed Test Channel

The first thing to do when trying to determine if your Internet connection is up to speed is perform a Speed Test from a web browser. Preferably, from a computer attached to your network by Ethernet instead of WiFi.

A slow Internet or intermittent connection can be the cause of freezing across many channels. If you are only experiencing buffering from one or two channels, then chances are it is more than likely an issue with the channels themselves.


To perform a speed test on your Internet choose a Free service like speedtest.net

Navigate to speedtest.net preferable from a computer hooked to your Router by Ethernet and check your Internet speed.

Choose a server near you and once you've confirmed you are receiving the speed you are paying for from your broadband provider, check your speed again. Except this time from your Roku using the Roku Speed Test channel. (You can add it to your Roku below.)





ADD SEED TEST CHANNEL


PRIVATE CHANNEL CODE = SPEEDTEST



This Roku channel will check your Internet speed from your Router to your Roku. It's especially useful if you are using WiFi. It's quite normal to notice a slower connection speed when using WiFi. This is why it's highly recommended to connect your Roku or any other media streamer by Ethernet whenever possible.

The Speed Test app checks your connection to your Roku by downloading six separate files which vary in size and will list each speed of the download as separate lines. This is a little different then the speed test performed from a web browser which only lists one download and upload speed.

Be sure to try it a few times using different servers and maybe at different times of the day to rule out congestion on your WiFi network from other neighbors using the same WiFi channel.


How To Use The Roku Speed Test App


Reading the output from the Roku Speed Test channel can be a little confusing but it's really quite simple when you learn how it works.

Pay attention the 6 furthest number on right side of your screen. These number are represented as megabytes per second (Mbps) and is how fast your Roku connection was with each of the 6 files tested through your broadband Internet connection.

Should these numbers be much lower than the recommended speeds we listed and is not what you are being charged for you may have an issue with either your line going to your home or it could also be your WiFi equipment. If the numbers are higher than the numbers needed, even better.

If using a wireless Internet connection and your Ethernet connected computer is fine, try moving your Roku and Router as close as possible to each other.

The Roku Speed Test channel top line also reports latency or the time it takes for the packet to go from point A to B. You want to see this below 100 (ms) milliseconds which is perfectly normal.

One last tip to help you get the best streaming performance. The numbers shown were recommended by the various streaming TV services for one device. For each additional device you want to use at the same time, you need to double or triple these numbers depending on how many devices you want connected to your Internet at the same time while you are watching TV on your Roku or other media streamer.

Hopefully this will help you determine if your Internet connection is fast enough to stream with Roku or any other streaming devices. A Speed Test is a useful tool that will tell you how fast your Internet connection is and if it meats the minimal standards needed for TV streaming.


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