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Video Buffering Challenges – Our New World

video buffering challenges

The more we choose, or are forced to use “over the top” services to get desired content, the more we have to live with video buffering challenges.

More and more of us are watching “television” by streaming video over the Internet. Previously, we just relied on cable TV or DVD.

Here in Canada, most of us combine our media requirements into a triple-play package. Our Internet Service Providers serve us with cable television, Internet and home phone in one package. My ISP is Shaw Cable and my Internet speed is supposed to be up to 600 Mbps. It’s expensive but should be enough for most households.

With cable television, I never had a problem with buffering. Not so with Internet, though. The cable circuits are generally dedicated with higher quality of service. Internet service has more points of failure.

This year I am forced to use DAZN to watch English Premier League soccer, or football. Previously on the cable TV sports channels, most of our professional soccer is now provided by DAZN on video streaming.

When DAZN first started streaming NFL football a few years ago, it had tremendous technical problems. Although perhaps not as bad, it’s happening again with soccer. Hopefully this gets worked out soon.

Video Buffering Problems – Not Just Football

In addition, I have frequent video buffering problems with other streaming services, including the popular Netflix and Prime Video.

Most ISP do not guarantee speeds, just use best efforts. As Shaw says: “Connection speeds may vary based on modem equipment, client device capability, building wiring, internet traffic and environmental conditions. Up to speeds are based on optimal conditions.”

I use WiFi to connect to my streaming box. At first I thought the delays may relate to wireless rather than wired. Obviously, when you have a bunch of devices hooked onto your wireless router, your local speeds are a lot less than 300-600 Mbps. But I have done enough testing on my wired Ethernet devices to know that even without wireless, there is still a lot of buffering. But less.

So, if you get a chance, run an Ethernet cable to your streaming box and cross your fingers.

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