Can I Watch YouTube Videos Over Satellite Internet?

by Steve McDonnell

You can watch a YouTube video over just about any Internet connection, but you can only watch an uninterrupted video over a connection that's fast enough to support the resolution video you're watching, either low- , standard- or high-definition. If your satellite plan is fast enough to support video, monitor the amount of data that's downloaded when you watch videos. If you exceed your monthly download limit, you may incur charges above your standard monthly rate for Internet service.

Watching Video on the Internet

You can watch YouTube videos over virtually any speed network connection, even dial-up. However, you may have to download the video first on a slow connection before you can watch it, or the video will pause intermittently while it waits for the next section to download. You can adjust the resolution quality of a video you want to watch to its lowest setting of 240p; this will make the file smaller, causing it to download more quickly, but it will also provide a lower-resolution picture.

Watching Uninterrupted Video With Satellite

YouTube requires an Internet connection with at least 0.5 Mbps. However, to view a standard-definition video uninterrupted by buffering, other video sites recommend a connection of at least 1.5 Mbps. To view a high-definition video uninterrupted, a connection of 3 Mbps or higher is recommended. Many satellite Internet service providers offer plans with a 10 Mbps or higher download speed, which is more than sufficient to watch a YouTube video uninterrupted.

Satellite Internet Download Limits

Like many mobile phone providers, satellite Internet service providers usually allow you to download a certain number of gigabytes each month; for example, 10GB per month. Hughesnet estimates that 10GB is equivalent to about 15 hours of standard definition video or about three hours of high-definition video. When you exceed your monthly limit, you pay a surcharge for each megabyte over the limit that you download.

YouTube Video Speed History

YouTube tracks the speed at which every video is watched by a user. You can right-click any video and choose "Take Speed Test" to view a summary of the speed data for the past 30 days. The data shows you the average speed for users of your Internet service provider, along with that of users in your city, state, country and global numbers. It also shows each ISP that's close to you with its average speed.

About the Author

Steve McDonnell's experience running businesses and launching companies complements his technical expertise in information, technology and human resources. He earned a degree in computer science from Dartmouth College, served on the WorldatWork editorial board, blogged for the Spotfire Business Intelligence blog and has published books and book chapters for International Human Resource Information Management and Westlaw.

Photo Credits

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