The Speedtest app for iOS has added a new data point that you can complain to your ISP.
Ookla, which makes Speedtest, announced on Monday that it has added a video streaming test, which tells you the best resolution to stream video content on all your devices without annoying buffers or hiccups.
The video test is completely different from the standard speed test, which tells you how fast your connection is. Instead, as Ookla explains, the video test plays “an actual video to specifically measure the performance of video streaming on your network at any time”, which is necessary “because video traffic cannot be simulated over a network.” The video goes through a series of resolutions, up to 4K, to judge which resolution is best given your wifi features.
Of course, good video streaming is a must these days. The Covid-19 pandemic has forced both workers and students into an endless series of video calls, while the entertainment world has shifted its focus to streaming services, which have become overwhelmingly plentiful. Since many of us have been stuck at home for the past year, our electricity consumption has exploded, according to the Nielsen findings.
“During the second quarter of 2020, Americans saw more than 142 billion minutes of streaming video, ”Nielsen wrote in August 2020 report. It also found that “streaming consumption across all video options is up more than 74% from last year—Accelerated by COVID-19 – signals that streaming is now the present and the future of content creation. ”
You will find Speedtest’s new streaming analysis function at the bottom of the screen in the app. Just click “Video” and press the giant yellow play button in the middle. A video of what appears to be fiber optic cables will reassure you through the test, which you must leave in place for it to complete. (Do not check a text in the middle, otherwise you will have to restart.) I Finally, it will give you an assessment of your network’s streaming situation. For example, it recommended that I only stream with a maximum resolution of 1440p, that is lovely news since I just blew a few hundred dollars on a 4K TV and hit cable for YouTube TV. Yeah!
The video streaming test is only available on Speedtest for iOS at the moment, but Ookla says it plans to roll out to other platforms in the future. If you already have Speedtest, just update the app and you will see the new feature. Otherwise you can download the app – it’s free! And a great tool to have next time you need to negotiate your internet bill down a few dollars.