How To Stop Buffering When Streaming | Box Broadband (2024)

We’ve all been there: you’re streaming the finale of your favourite TV show and you’re just about to watch the big reveal when disaster strikes. The spinny circle of doom appears in the middle of your screen and your content starts buffering — just as you were getting to the good bit.

Buffering can really kill the mood when you’re streaming, especially if you’re trying to watch live TV or sports. But what is buffering, why does it happen, and how can you make it stop?

We’ve got all the answers, so you never have to miss out on a shocking plot twist or a crucial goal ever again.

What Does Buffering Mean?

Buffering technically means pre-downloading content. It’s a technique used by streaming sites to ensure you can watch videos in one go, right away, without any annoying delays.

Rather than loading an entire video before you’re able to watch it, your content is downloaded while you watch. That means you can hit play and start streaming immediately.

But what’s commonly referred to as buffering is the delay that occurs when this process happens too slowly. That’s when the spinny circle of doom enters the chat.

What Causes Buffering?

Essentially, buffering is caused by a slow or overloaded network. If your home broadband connection isn’t up to scratch, video data can’t load quickly enough while you watch. That’s when your stream pauses to play catch-up. It’s waiting for enough data to load that you can keep watching without annoying lag.

These delays can happen if your base connection speed isn’t fast enough, if you’re far away from your WiFi router, if lots of other people are using your home network for data-heavy activities at the same time, or if you’re on an old broadband network that’s facing bandwidth congestion or interference.

How Can I Stop Buffering When Streaming?

Here are a few things you can try to reduce buffering during streaming:

  • Watch in lower quality — Turning down the definition of your stream (from 4K or Ultra HD to HD or even SD) means smaller data packets for your device to download. This requires less bandwidth from your internet connection, so you get less buffering.
  • Maximise bandwidth — Using your broadband to do lots of other things as well as streaming can cause buffering as your connection becomes congested. Where possible, close down other applications or devices that are using the internet. Shut all the other tabs on your browser and don’t try to load multiple videos at the same time.
  • Identify black spots — If you notice that you get a lot of buffering while streaming in certain areas of the house, you might be in a WiFi black spot. Move closer to your router to enjoy faster downloads.
  • Plug in — If that doesn’t help, try plugging your device directly into your router with an ethernet cable. This will give you a much faster connection than WiFi and could help solve your buffering woes.

How Can I Improve My Internet Speed?

If none of the above tips work, your issue might be your internet speed in general. If you’re getting poor results when you test your broadband speeds, here are a few tips that could improve your connection:

  • Get split lines — If you get cable TV and internet from the same provider, both signals might be going through the same wires (causing slowdowns for both). You can ask your provider for a signal splitter to ensure your cable connection isn’t taking up vital internet bandwidth.
  • Get a WiFi booster — Too many WiFi dead zones in your home? Try using a WiFi booster or extender in rooms where the signal seems weak.
    Top tip: put the booster where the signal is strong, not where it’s weak. It’s an extender, not a receiver.
  • Isolate smart home devices — If you have a lot of smart devices in your house, they could be taking up lots of bandwidth too. A neat trick is to create a guest network on your home broadband and move all your smart devices onto that network. That way, they clog up your regular network and you can switch off any non-essential traffic all in one go.

Of course, every internet has a maximum speed it’s capable of achieving. For example, many old copper ADSL networks can only reach up to 8 Mbps. No manner of clever hacks can get those networks up to the 25 Mbps you need to stream in the highest quality with no buffering.

Box Broadband Can Help

If you’ve tried everything and you’re still getting annoying buffering delays, it might be time to upgrade to superfast full fibre broadband.

Box Broadband offers a range of packages at different speeds to suit your needs, from 100 Mbps for smaller homes to 1 Gbps for large households that love 4K streaming.

To find out how to hook your home up, just contact us today. We can’t wait to give you the viewing experience you deserve.

How To Stop Buffering When Streaming | Box Broadband (2024)


How To Stop Buffering When Streaming | Box Broadband? ›

Identify black spots — If you notice that you get a lot of buffering while streaming in certain areas of the house, you might be in a WiFi black spot. Move closer to your router to enjoy faster downloads. Plug in — If that doesn't help, try plugging your device directly into your router with an ethernet cable.

How do I make my streaming not buffer? ›

Here's some things you can do to achieve that:
  1. Close other applications and programs. ...
  2. Pause the stream for a few moments. ...
  3. Reduce video quality. ...
  4. Speed up your internet connection. ...
  5. Remove other devices connected to your network. ...
  6. Update graphics card drivers. ...
  7. Try a wired Ethernet connection. ...
  8. Clean up your browser settings.
Jan 30, 2020

Will increasing my broadband speed stop buffering? ›

Typically a slow or unreliable Wi-Fi network in the home can be the cause of video buffering on streaming devices. One way to avoid this is to make sure your home network maintains consistent minimum speeds. Your network should have a download speed of around 25-30 Mbps to reduce or even avoid buffering.

What causes constant buffering when streaming? ›

This is done to ensure smooth playback. There are two common reasons for buffering: 1) your internet connection is too slow to stream a video in real time, and 2) the speed at which your router sends the video to all your internet-connected devices is too slow.

Does faster broadband mean less buffering? ›

The benefits of faster broadband speeds include quicker downloads, less buffering whilst streaming, and more bandwidth so more devices can connect without delay or lag.

Why does my TV keep buffering but internet is fine? ›

The TV will have difficulty streaming content if there is a weak signal, causing it to buffer or lag. Environmental factors such as heavy rain or thick walls in your house can also adversely affect wireless signals. This can cause the signal to become weak and lead to buffering on your television.

How do I optimize my streaming settings? ›

Different streaming services have different ways of changing your video streaming settings, but it's usually as simple as clicking on a settings or gear icon within the app. Look for an option that allows you to adjust video quality or data usage and select a lower quality option to reduce High-Speed Data usage.

How do I fix my broadband speed? ›

Top tips for improving your broadband speed
  1. Test your internet speed.
  2. Restart your router.
  3. Move your router to a better position in your home.
  4. Keep your router away from other devices.
  5. Try using a Wi-Fi Extender.
  6. Add or update your Wi-Fi password.
  7. Plug in with an Ethernet cable.
  8. Consider upgrading your router.
Mar 13, 2023

What slows down broadband speed? ›

There are a number of factors which can affect the speed of your broadband connection. The distance your home is from the telephone exchange, the time of day you go online and the number of people in your home using the internet at the same time, can all play a part in slowing down your connection.

Will resetting router help buffering? ›

If web pages aren't loading or streaming video keeps buffering, resetting your router and modem is one of the first things you should try, as it can fix a slew of Wi-Fi or Internet connection problems. This works just like rebooting your Windows PC when you're having issues.

How do I check my buffering speed? ›

There are plenty of apps and websites that will test the speed of your connection. Some more popular speed test services include, or CloudFlare. Whether you install an app or use a website, it's a good idea to run the test a few times to get a sense of your connection's performance.

How do I stop slow buffering? ›

How to Fix Slow Buffering?
  1. Fix 1 – Close Unwanted Applications and Programs. ...
  2. Fix 2 – Pause Streaming For a Few Minutes. ...
  3. Fix 3 – Decrease Video Quality. ...
  4. Fix 4 – Check Internet Speed. ...
  5. Fix 5 – Use A VPN. ...
  6. Fix 6 – Remove Other Devices Connected To The Network. ...
  7. Fix 7 – Update Graphics Card Driver. ...
  8. Fix 8 – Clear Browser Settings.
Jul 2, 2023

What is the difference between buffering and streaming? ›

Buffering is the practice of pre-loading segments of data when streaming video content. Streaming — the continuous transmission of audio or video files from a server to a client — is the process that makes watching videos online possible.

What broadband speed do I need for streaming? ›

For standard definition (SD) streaming you'll need at least an average speed of 3Mbps, for HD 5-8Mbps and for 4K UHD you'll need 25Mbps minimum, but we recommend a connection of 50Mbps to cover all scenarios (live 4K broadcasts require more speed, for example).

How many Mbps do I need to stream without buffering? ›

8 Mbps is a decent speed for standard HD streaming, but it should be noted that ultra-high definition is usually synonymous with 4k resolution, which needs much more bandwidth. We recommend a connection with at least 25 Mbps to get the best quality video.

What is broadband buffering? ›

Internet Buffering meaning

Buffering, as the name suggests, is the process of preloading data in a reserved area of memory, referred to as buffer. When it comes to streaming online, the process of buffering assists the software to save a certain amount of data (audio or video) before the audio or video starts playing.

How do I make Netflix buffer less? ›

Here are the most common fixes to solve Netflix buffering problems:
  1. Check your Internet Connection. ...
  2. Restart your Wi-Fi Modem. ...
  3. Use Wired Connection. ...
  4. Reposition your Wi-Fi Router. ...
  5. Contact your Internet Service Provider. ...
  6. Change your Video Stream Quality on Netflix. ...
  7. Clear Cache on your Browser.
May 6, 2023

How do I stop my Roku from buffering? ›

Here are all of the best ways to stop buffering when using a Roku to stream media.
  1. Restart your Roku. ...
  2. Reboot your Roku. ...
  3. Update your Roku. ...
  4. Remove a channel or app and then re-add it. ...
  5. Check for overheating. ...
  6. Switch to a wired internet connection. ...
  7. Disconnect other devices from your internet. ...
  8. Restart your modem.
Feb 16, 2022


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