Have you ever wondered how much data you need to stream your favorite movie or show on Netflix? You are not alone. Unfortunately the answer is not as clear as you might think, with the streaming service ball-parking it between 1GB per hour to 7GB per hour depending on the resolution in which it streams (Full HD, 4K Ultra HD, etc.). Here is everything you need to know about how much data Netflix uses, as well as tips on how to limit Netflix data usage.
How much data does Netflix use?
|SD||Full HD||4K Ultra HD|
|Up to 1 GB video per hour||Up to 3 GB video per hour||Up to 7 GB video per hour|
Downloading the content also does not save on data usage. It takes about the same amount of bandwidth to retrieve all the resources needed to save the video locally, plus you must have the space to save it. However, these are worst-case scenarios & # 39; s. In reality, the content you stream can use much less data. It all comes down to how long the material is, the average frame rate, the color depth and whether HDR is used.
How to limit Netflix data usage
Of course, those of us with a strict data plan cannot afford to shoot 7 GB 4K Ultra HD video per hour, and that is not necessary when we watch mobile. That's why Netflix has built in some neat features in its Android and iOS applications that you can use to limit how much data they use. However, you cannot set a specific data limit, but you can choose from four basic options: Automatic, Maximum data, Save data, and Wi-Fi only.
They are all pretty self-explanatory, but here is an overview:
- Automatic: This mode balances economical data usage with good video quality to compress approximately four hours of video per GB (results may vary) ).
- Maximum data: This mode streams with the highest possible quality for your device and the content you are viewing, in most cases 4K Ultra HD.
- Saving Data: As the name implies, this mode reduces the quality to minimize data usage by approximately six hours of video per GB.
- Wi-Fi only: You can only stream on the device while you are connected to Wi-Fi here. Downloaded content can still be used when Wi-Fi is turned off.
Do you like the sound of one of those options? You can adjust your mobile data usage as follows:
- Open the Netflix application.
- Select the icon Menu in the top left or top right corner depending on the device you are using.
- Tap Use of mobile data .
- Select Automatic Maximum data Save data or Wi-Fi only .
You also have the option to set up data caps for each profile on your Netflix account, so if you look at multiple devices or a child with a mobile plan skips on the data front, you can ensure that it is always minimal data consumed without compromising the viewing experience of other users. These choices differ slightly from the application-wide limitations and offer a data limitation per hour, starting at 0.3 GB and up to 7 GB.
Here you see them:
- Automatic: This is automatically adjusted to deliver the highest possible quality based on your current internet connection.
- Low: Low allows 0.3 GB per hour per device.
- Medium: This allows 0.7 GB per hour per device with an SD resolution
- High: This option offers a maximum of 3 GB per hour per device for HD; 7 GB per hour per device for 4K Ultra HD.
To set a profile-specific usage setting:
- Go to Netflix.com on a computer and log in.
- Select the profile that you want to change the data usage settings for.
- Tap Account .
- Under My profile tap Playback settings .
- Select the desired data usage option.