Does Netflix Work With WiFi?

By Luke Arthur

Updated September 28, 2017

When you want to stream Netflix films over a wireless connection, you should not be concerned about whether it will work correctly; the service does offer this capability. As long as you have chosen a gaming console or streaming device that works on Wi-Fi, watching movies through this connection is very simple. The movie streaming quality that you can get through your wireless network could surprise you.

Wired or Wi-Fi

The Netflix service is designed to work on both wired and wireless connections. When you use Netflix over a wireless connection, it typically streams without any issues. Occasionally, you will have to wait for a few seconds while Netflix downloads the content, so that you can watch it. In most cases, you will not be able to tell a difference between using Netflix on Wi-Fi and using it on a wired connection.

Netflix Player

To make this work, you will need a Netflix player that has Wi-Fi capability. While the Netflix service itself can easily run Wi-Fi, you need a device that can pick up the signal. For example, using a gaming console such as the Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3 or the Xbox 360 should work fine. All of these devices have Wi-Fi capability and allow you to watch Netflix. You can also buy a streaming device.

Mobile Devices

With Netflix, you can even watch movies through a Wi-Fi connection on a mobile device. For example, the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch all have the capability of streaming Netflix through a Wi-Fi connection. You will simply need to download the Netflix app to your device and enter your account information. At that point, the device can pick up the Wi-Fi signal; it can stream movies and television shows through Netflix. You could also hook up your mobile device through a cellular network and watch Netflix.

Internet Connection Speed

When using Wi-Fi, the speed of your Internet connection will play a role in the quality of the video that is streamed from Netflix. If you have a low-speed Internet connection -- such as 700-Kbps -- the movies will not appear clearly and could have some lag time involved. If you get a faster Internet connection, the videos should be much more clear and will have minimal lag time. The Wi-Fi speed does not play as big of a role as the actual Internet connection speed.