Speedify Livestreaming Test

With Speedify 11.5 we introduced a Livestreaming test in the Speedify app along with the existing Speed test. The Livestreaming test evaluates your upload performance with Speedify to estimate what video streaming quality you can consistently expect to support. At the end, the test will report the resolution and frame rate (fps) your Internet can support.

How does it work?

Unlike a speedtest, the streaming test is not attempting to completely max out your upload speed. Instead, it attempts to send fixed rate, consistent traffic, similar to a video stream, and looks at performance variations and packet loss to judge how consistent your Internet performance is at a specific speed.

The results are conservative to leave some extra upload bandwidth available in case of performance variations and to allow bandwidth for other apps you might need while streaming. In some cases you might be able to push to a higher quality than the test reports, but could potentially run into trouble if your Internet connection is not reliable.

For more technically inclined users, the streaming tests is testing performance with both TCP traffic and UDP traffic. Some services use TCP traffic for streaming, often those using RTMP. Other services, using WebRTC for example, prefer to use UDP. The tests evaluates both and if there is a difference between the results, will go with the lower result. You may see the test go through a few iterations at different quality levels and it tries to settle on the best result.

You can access the test directly from the Dashboard if you are running Speedify in Streaming mode and you are connected. Or you can access it from the  menu under Performance Tests.



How accurate is it?

The livestreaming test gives a very accurate picture of how your internet will handle Livestreaming and video calls.  That said there are a couple caveats:

Different streaming services have different recommendations for how much upload speed you need for a particular quality. Also the type of content you are streaming (i.e. how static the video is) can affect how much upload you need. The test is evaluating the quality based on average recommendations from different services, but depending on the particular streaming service you are using and other streaming settings, you might see slightly different results when streaming. The test should give a good estimate on what quality you can expect.

The test is only evaluating network upload performance and not actually streaming video. Other factors such as your camera quality, CPU, GPU and streaming software can have an effect on the streaming quality. For example, even if your network upload can support streaming in 4K quality, other elements of your setup might limit you from doing that. The video encoding at that quality might be too much for your CPU or GPU to keep up with, or you camera might not support 4K input, or your streaming service might not allow streaming at 4K.