New YouTube Tool Reveals How Well Your ISP Can Stream Video

YouTube announced the released of a new tool today that assesses the level of video quality that your Internet service provider is capable of streamin YouTube videos.

If you live in the US or Canada, you can use the Google Video Quality Report tool to find out how well your ISP stacks up. If you often run into issues with videos buffering, then this report will shed some light as to why. The report will also offer tips to make YouTube play better.

If your ISP isn’t streaming videos at the level of quality you would like, you can also use the tool to compare your ISP against other ISPs in your area based on the level of video quality they are capable of delivering.

These are the levels on which the tool ranks video performance:

  • HD Verified: If your provider can consistently deliver HD video, a resolution of at least 720p, without buffering or interruptions–it’s HD Verified.
  • Standard Definition: If you can watch videos at a resolution of at least 360p, your provider is delivering Standard Definition.
  • Lower Definition: If videos load slowly or frequently buffer, even at resolutions lower than 360p, your provider is delivering Lower Definition performance.

For those not living in the US or Canada, YouTube says they will be bringing this tool to other countries “in the coming months.”

How To Improve Your Video Quality

Included in YouTube’s announcement is an infographic featuring 7 tips that use can use to improve your video quality. They are as follows:

  • Check your quality report using the new tool
  • Make sure your roommates aren’t hogging all the bandwidth
  • Keep your browser updated
  • Update your plugins
  • Clear the cache and cookies
  • See if performance is better closer to your Wi-Fi router
  • Restart your computer and your router

If you’re interested in learning more about the technical aspect of how this new tool works, YouTube has also provided their methodology.