What broadband speed do I need for my Smart TV?
First Published 17th of August 2022
If you want to get the most out of your Smart TV, it’s important to have a fast and reliable broadband connection. But how much speed do you need? Here is some advice on what broadband speed you will need for your Smart TV, based on what activities you plan on doing with it:
The speed you need depends what you use your TV for
Your internet speed requirements will vary depending on what you’re using your smart TV for. For example, a casual user watching movies and shows on Netflix or Hulu could probably get by with 25Mbps download speeds. Meanwhile, someone who likes to play online games like Fortnite or Call of Duty would likely need 50+ Mbps speeds to play smoothly without lag.
There’s also the issue of multiple devices being used at once—if more than one person is streaming video from Netflix, Hulu or another streaming service at the same time as playing Fortnite on their own console (or smartphone), then you’ll need more bandwidth than that. If you have several kids running around with their own tablets and laptops in the house all using Wi-Fi simultaneously too, then this can put even more strain on your broadband connection: if everyone is watching different things at once but also gaming at the same time (see our guide to what broadband speed you need for gaming) then it’s possible that each device could be consuming 100Mb/s per second!
On demand TV and streaming
If you’re using your Smart TV for streaming services like Netflix (see our guide to what broadband speed you need for Netflix), Amazon Prime Video and YouTube then you’ll need a faster broadband speed than someone who is just using it for social media.
Streaming services like BBC iPlayer, Eurosport and TVPlayer also require a fast internet connection to work properly – but only if you want to watch live TV without buffering. If you want to catch up with old episodes or catch-up shows after they have been broadcasted then the quality of your streaming device will be more important than the speed of your broadband connection.
Web browsing and downloading photos
Web browsing and downloading photos: You need a minimum of 2Mbps to browse the web, with 5Mbps or more for faster load times. If you’re picking up your phone at home, you’ll want to make sure your plan has at least 2Gbps data speed so that you can stream videos on YouTube and Facebook without any issues.
Downloading music: If you download music from the Internet, it’s best to have 10Mbps or higher speeds in order to ensure that files don’t take too long to download and play back.
Downloading videos: When it comes to streaming movies and TV shows online, 15Mbps+ will be needed in order for them not stutter while playing back.
Large file downloads: If you regularly get large files (e-books, photos) via email attachments or another source, 25Mbps+ is recommended because these files tend to be larger than those mentioned above [in this section].
If you like to play online games, you will want a higher speed connection.
If you are streaming videos, then a lower speed might be sufficient.
Multiple users connected at the same time
Your speed needs will depend on the number of people who are using the internet at any given time. The more users, the faster your broadband speed needs to be. Similarly, if you have multiple devices connected to the internet, they will all need a certain amount of bandwidth and therefore require a faster connection.
If two people are streaming video content on different devices in your house at once (for example), it’s likely that your connection won’t be able to handle both streams without buffering or needing improvement. If four people were doing this simultaneously then it would become extremely difficult to enjoy anything without constantly having dropped connections or missing out on key moments in movies and TV shows due to buffering times being too long.
The speed you will need depends on how much online activity your household does
The more people in your household, the more devices you have connected and the more you use the internet, the faster your broadband connection should be.
We hope this article has helped you understand how to get the best TV experience, and what broadband speed you will need for your Smart TV. The speed you need depends on how much online activity your household does, but if all of these things are important to you then we would always recommend going for the fastest option available in order to avoid any frustration when trying to use any of these functions on your TV.