Smooth Streaming: How to Improve Video Streaming on Your Mac

Streaming content has become one of the most common ways that people relax at the end of the day. But, this process can easily be disrupted if you encounter issues with your Mac computer’s performance.

Fortunately, it’s not as difficult as you may think to get things running much more smoothly.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about how to improve your video streaming.

Close Background Programs

As you may expect, it’s not uncommon to experience slowdowns while you’re streaming if you’re also simultaneously using multiple programs.

For example, running something that is CPU-intensive (such as video editing software) could hurt your streaming quality. The same could be said if you have a large volume of programs open or even multiple Internet browser tabs.

If you’re not getting the experience you’d like, try closing out everything that you currently are using. Chances are, this will improve both the speed and quality of the content you stream.

To help facilitate this, it’s best to restart your computer and then ensure that the only application you’re running is the one that you’re using to stream content.

Test Your Internet Connection

Sometimes, poor streaming quality can be attributed to a poor Internet connection.

Before you move on to more difficult solutions, test the speed of your connection to determine if it’s performing as well as it should. There are plenty of free tools you can find on Google that allow you to do so.

If your Internet connection is performing as it should, chances are the root of the problem lies elsewhere.

If your Internet is running slower than normal, you may need to get in touch with your Internet service provider. Many ISPs list current outages on their websites, allowing you to see if others are having similar issues.

Disconnect Other Devices

Similar to how running too many programs at once can hinder your ability to stream high-quality content, so can having too many devices connected to your Internet simultaneously. Although it may seem inconvenient at first, it’s often worth disconnecting your phone, iPad, another computer, etc. from your Internet.

This will immediately help free up bandwidth that you can use to stream content more efficiently.

A common scenario involves someone else in your home using a large amount of bandwidth while you’re also attempting to stream content. To see if this is the cause of the issue, ask them to briefly pause or exit the application they’re using.

Then, you’ll be able to see if your performance improves.

If you aren’t able to stream content how you’d like, there are offline streaming methods you can try. You can visit this resource to learn more about the benefits a Netflix app for Mac has to offer.

Try a Direct Connection

If you’re currently using a wireless Internet connection, try using a direct connection instead.

Using an ethernet cable to connect your streaming device directly to your router is a well-known fix for poor performance. The speeds your experience is notably higher than a wireless connection depending on how strong your wireless signal is. In many cases, though, an ethernet cable will still be superior to strong wireless Internet.

You’ll also have the added benefit of being able to maintain a higher level of consistency.

Unless your router goes completely offline, you shouldn’t experience any form of slowdown. When using an ethernet cable, though, try to place your streaming device as close to your router as possible. Otherwise, you run the risk of damaging the cable if a person or pet trips over it.

Restart Your Router

Restarting your router is often a reliable way to resolve network issues. To elaborate, this is known as a ‘power cycle’ and it clears the network’s cached data.

When the router boots back up, any issues stemming from your network’s cache will likely be fixed.

An important detail to keep in mind is that restarting your router will remove other devices from the network. If your streaming device is the first one that is connected back to your router, you likely won’t run into any problems.

But, if you gradually begin to experience a slowdown after restarting your router, this could be due to the other devices connecting back to the network.

So, it’s important to remember this information in case restarting your router only provides a temporary solution. If this does occur, try disconnecting other devices from your network and leaving them disconnected.

Try Adjusting The Quality

If you aren’t able to find a solution, you may need to adjust the quality of the content you are attempting to stream. For example, streaming in 4K or HD is far more intensive than streaming in 360p.

Although it isn’t ideal, it’s better than not being able to watch your content at all.

Be sure to manually change the setting as opposed to allowing your streaming platform to automatically choose what quality is best for you. If the strength of your Internet connection continually fluctuates, it may attempt to stream content at a higher quality than is currently available on your device.

Optimizing Your Video Streaming Can Seem Difficult

But it doesn’t have to be.

With the above information about how to improve video streaming on your computer in mind, you’ll be well on your way toward watching your favorite shows as seamlessly as possible.

Want to learn more tips that can help you out in the future? Be sure to check out the rest of our blog.

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