How Much Bandwidth Is Needed for Video Streaming

Have you ever watched Korean drama on the internet and found long buffering time annoying? Have you ever watched a live streaming video of your favorite KOL but disappointed by the video lag or tearing? Video streaming becomes increasingly popular. Some businesses are even using live streaming to reach out to audience across the world. To stream videos smoothly, video hosting site and broadcasters must have enough bandwidth, specifically upload speed.

Your upload speed determines how fast you can push your content up to the internet. It is directly connected with buffering of video streaming. When the upload speed falls, the stream gets delayed in reaching the viewers, or gets distributed in broken packets which is shown as buffering. As soon as buffering begins, viewers begin to abandon a video. It is found that around 6 percent of viewers leave per second of buffering. To avoid that, you need to maintain a higher upload speed, which means you will require a higher bandwidth.

How Much Bandwidth Is Needed for Video Streaming?

The bit rate is the bottom line that determines how much data your broadcast will consume. A higher bit rate allows better video quality and consumes more data.

Assuming 30 frames per second, here are common recommendations for bit rates for various video resolutions:

Stream ResolutionStreaming Bit Rate
4K13 – 34 Mbps
1080p3 – 6 Mbps
720p1.5 – 4 Mbps
420p0.5 – 2 Mbps
360p0.4 – 1 Mbps


To ensure you have enough streaming upload bandwidth for your broadcast, generally we recommend having twice the upload bandwidth compared to the bit rate. If your 720p video (4 Mbps bit rate) is stored on a server for on-demand streaming and this stream is viewed by 50 people at the same time using a Unicast protocol, the requirement is:

Video bit rate (in Mbps) x estimate no. of people = no. of bandwidth (in Mbps/s)


4Mbps x 50 = 200Mbps of bandwidth

In this case, you require at least 200Mbps of bandwidth, and you should aim for 400Mbps bandwidth as a buffer to account for any changes to your network.  

Moreover, your total bandwidth requirements will be the total of all your streams added together. So if you are streaming a 360p stream, a 720p stream, and a 1080p stream, plus the audio for each, the total bit rate may be nearly 12 Mbps. Make sure your bandwidth is at least double of what you expect to need.

Dataplugs offer dedicated international bandwidth for all dedicated servers, which guarantees you always receive the maximum bandwidth you subscribed, without being shared by other subscribers. All PowerEdge dedicated servers come with 100Mbps dedicated international bandwidth by default. You can upgrade to 1Gbps dedicated international bandwidth for just HK$8,800 now (original price HK$13,500). Our high bandwidth dedicated servers are capable of video streaming, live streaming, online gaming and a variety of high traffic workloads.

Talk to our sales and learn more about our high bandwidth dedicated servers now!

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