With ridiculously addictive shows like House of Cards, Stranger Things and Orange is the New Black exclusively available Netflix, it isn’t hard to see why the service has gathered a whopping 86 million customers across the globe, 200,000 of which are based here in Ireland.
However, there are still some people that are regularly faced with buffering streams and pixelated images when they sit down for a relaxing evening of Netflix viewing. Why? Because their broadband connection isn’t up to the task!
According to Netflix’s own Help Centre, the following speeds are required for a certain standard of service:
While most providers have the potential to provide well above these speeds, there is often a big difference between the speed you could get and the speed you actually get.
A wide range of factors, such as the position of your router, the amount of devices connected at once and time of day can all have a huge impact on the quality of your connection. And since most people do the majority of their online streaming in the evening at around the same time, that dreaded buffering bar can appear all-too frequently - especially for standard DSL users.
Check out our 7 ways to speed up your broadband connection guide to make sure you’re getting as powerful a connection as possible.
Every month, Netflix publishes the average speed being achieved by providers in every country in which it has customers.
In November, Virgin Media were top of the Netflix charts here in Ireland, but the average speed might surprise you. It was 3.44 Mbps.
So, going by Netflix’s own recommended speeds, the best average speed in Ireland is still 1.56 Mbps short of the minimum requirement for HD viewing. And it’s a massive 21.56 Mbps shy of Ultra HD quality.
So, what’s to be done to get the best possible Netflix service? Here are three steps every subscriber should follow.
As mentioned, you might be paying for a broadband speed of 100 Mbps or even higher, but are probably only getting a fraction of this speed.
You can test your speed in real time by visiting broadbandspeedtest.ie – that’ll give you an idea of the quality of service you can expect from Netflix right now.
Whatever speed you’re getting, there are usually some quick and easy ways to squeeze a bit more life out of your connection.
Positioning your router in clear view of your device, updating your browser and removing electrical items like baby monitors from the room can all help improve your speed. But the very best way to speed up your broadband it to directly connect your router to your device with a ethernet cable.
The only way to be certain of getting the best broadband deal for Netflix in your area is to compare the market. And then to switch to a better deal if there’s one out there.
Our Compare Broadband page will show you the top speeds, data limits and monthly price of all of the deals available in your area.
Here’s a sneak peek at three of the most popular broadband deals available to Netflix fans at the moment.
Virgin Media – great if you want tip-top speeds
Pure Telecom – perfect if you want simplicity and value
Vodafone – six months of free Netflix? Yes please!
We are living in an era of unprecedented entertainment excellence, with some of the greatest movies, documentaries and TV series ever made available at the click of a shiny Netflix button. Or, as of yesterday, an Amazon Prime button, which just launched in Ireland too.
Most of Ireland's providers are becoming aware of just how important streaming quality is to customers picking a new broadband deal, and that is being reflected in some of the Netflix-friendly offers we're seeing in the market these days. However, many households are still missing out on satisfying streaming because of underperforming broadband.
To benefit from the exceptional options available these days, regularly check your broadband speed, re-position that router and keep your eyes peeled for new broadband deals. And hopefully you'll soon be able to wave bye-bye to that bothersome buffering broadband for good.
We’re Ireland’s leading price comparison and switching site. We’re free to use and make comparing prices across suppliers quick and easy!
We save you time by bringing you all the best deals in one place. Every year we help tens of thousands of customers to switch and save money!
We’re 100% impartial and are also accredited by the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) as an impartial, accurate and independent supplier of energy price comparisons.