How much speed do I need?

The data rate of your internet connection is measured in bits per second (bps). As data rates increase, it’s easier for providers and equipment manufacturers to express speeds by the thousands.

Kilobit – One kilobit is equal to 1,000 bits per second (Kbps)

Megabit – One megabit is equal to 1,000 Kbps or one million bits per second (Mbps)

Gigabit – One gigabit is equal to 1,000 Mbps, one million Kbps or one billion bits per second (Gbps)

Gigabit internet speeds are often considered the gold standard for internet users, as they can support an unlimited number of devices and users. You can shop gigabit speeds with internet service providers (ISPs) that offer fiber-optic and co-axial cable connections. 2 Gbps, or 2,000 Mbps, is currently the highest speed offered by any major provider.

Streaming

Typically you can stream in standard definition with speeds up to 3 Mbps. To stream in 4K or Ultra HD, you’ll need speeds up to 25 Mbps. Streaming services will offer speed recommendations to enjoy the platform in the highest quality. Here are the minimum speeds you need to stream uninterrupted using some of today’s most popular streaming services:

Netflix
  • 3 Mbps to stream in standard definition
  • 5 Mbps to stream in high definition
  • 25 Mbps to stream in HDR or 4K
Hulu
  • 3 Mbps to view on-demand titles
  • 8 Mbps to view live TV
AT&T
  • 2.5 Mbps to 7.5 Mbps to stream in HD via mobile device
  • 12 Mbps to stream via web browser at home
YouTube.TV
  • 3 Mbps to stream in standard definition
  •  7 Mbps to stream on one device in HD
  • 13 Mbps to stream in HD on multiple devices
gaming

Gaming

Speed recommendations for gaming will vary by the types of games you typically enjoy, but you’ll at least need a minimum of 4 – 8 Mbps in a single user household. A great gaming experience is often dependent on the quality of your internet connection and data transfer rate, so experienced gamers will often go for the fastest speeds they can afford and a connection type with historically low latency. See more details on minimum speed recommendations by gaming type and how you can maximize your gaming experience.

Working from home

The right internet speeds are paramount to a successful work from home setup, especially during COVID-19’s social distancing restraints. The speeds you require will depend on the type of work you do, but if you plan on video conferencing, checking emails or transferring large files, there are some minimum speed requirements to ensure you can successfully make your home office work for you:

• 2 Mbps to host a single, dual or triple screen Zoom call
• 3 – 4 Mbps to email and utilize basic computer programs like Microsoft Word
• 10 Mbps to host a group Skype video call
• 40+ Mbps to transfer large files

Work from home

Want to cut the cord?

CNET compares: PHILO VS. SLING TV VS. FUBO VS. HULU VS. YOUTUBE TV VS. DIRECTV STREAM: Top 100 channels compared. [Updated November 9, 2021]

Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
Total channels: 42 25 37 59 72 78 62
ABC No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
CBS No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fox No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
NBC No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
PBS No No No No No Yes No
CW No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
MyNetworkTV No No No No Yes Yes Yes
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
A&E Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes
ACC Network No $ No $ Yes Yes $
Accuweather Yes No No Yes No No Yes
AMC Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Animal Planet Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
BBC America Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
BBC World News Yes $ $ $ No Yes $
BET Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Big Ten Network No No $ Yes Yes Yes $
Bloomberg TV Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes
Boomerang No $ $ No Yes No Yes
Bravo No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
Cartoon Network No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
CBS Sports Network No No No Yes Yes Yes $
Cheddar Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes $
Cinemax No No No No $ $ $
CMT Yes $ $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
CNBC No No $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
CNN No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Comedy Central Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cooking Channel Yes $ $ $ $ No $
Destination America Yes $ $ $ $ No $
Discovery Channel Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Disney Channel No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Disney Junior No $ No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Disney XD No $ No Yes Yes Yes Yes
DIY Yes $ $ $ $ No $
E! No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
EPIX $ $ $ No No $ $
ESPN No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
ESPN 2 No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
ESPNEWS No $ No $ Yes Yes $
ESPNU No $ No $ Yes Yes $
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
Food Network Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fox Business No No $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fox News No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fox Sports 1 No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fox Sports 2 No No $ Yes Yes Yes $
Freeform No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
FX No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
FX Movies No No $ $ Yes Yes $
FXX No No $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
FYI Yes $ $ No Yes No $
Golf Channel No No $ Yes Yes Yes $
Hallmark Yes $ $ Yes No No Yes
HBO/HBO Max No No No No $ $ $
HGTV Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
History Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes
HLN No $ Yes No Yes Yes Yes
IFC Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Investigation Discovery Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Lifetime Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes
Lifetime Movie Network Yes $ $ No Yes No $
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
MLB Network No $ $ $ No Yes $
Motor Trend Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
MSNBC No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
MTV Yes $ $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
MTV2 Yes $ $ $ $ Yes Yes
National Geographic No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Nat Geo Wild No No $ $ Yes Yes $
NBA TV No $ $ $ No Yes $
NBC Sports Network No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
NFL Network No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No
NFL Red Zone No No $ $ $ $ No
NHL Network No $ $ $ No No $
Nickelodeon Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Nick Jr. Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes $
Nicktoons Yes $ $ $ $ Yes $
OWN Yes No No Yes No Yes $
Oxygen No No $ Yes Yes Yes $
Paramount Network Yes $ $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
Science Yes $ $ $ $ No $
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)
SEC Network No $ No $ Yes Yes $
Showtime No $ $ $ $ $ $
Smithsonian No No No Yes Yes Yes $
Starz $ $ $ $ $ $ $
Sundance TV Yes $ $ Yes No Yes Yes
Syfy No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Tastemade Yes $ $ Yes No Yes $
TBS No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
TCM No $ $ No Yes Yes Yes
TeenNick Yes $ $ $ $ Yes Yes
Telemundo No No No Yes Yes Yes $
Tennis Channel No $ $ $ No No $
TLC Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
TNT No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Travel Channel Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes $
TruTV No $ Yes No Yes Yes Yes
TV Land Yes $ $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
USA Network No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
VH1 Yes $ $ Yes Yes Yes Yes
Vice Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes
WE tv Yes $ $ Yes No Yes Yes
Channel Philo ($25) Sling Orange ($35) Sling Blue ($35) FuboTV ($65) Hulu with Live TV ($65) YouTube TV ($65) DirecTV Stream ($70)