BBC iPlayer keeps buffering is one of the most common problems users face when streaming online content. If you are an iPlayer user and are getting frustrated with the constant buffering and freezing, this guide is for you.
The BBC iPlayer is the most popular streaming platform in the UK. It is free and available to anyone in the UK who has a Smart TV, mobile, tablet, or computer. The BBC iPlayer is a long-standing brand that has grown a substantial user base in the UK.
Despite this growth, there are times when the service may experience buffering issues due to various reasons. This guide will explain the reasons for buffering and the possible solutions to deal with the problem.
What Broadband Speed Do I Need for BBC iPlayer
BBC iPlayer is a high-definition video streaming service that requires a faster internet connection. As a minimum, you need a broadband speed of 1.5 Mbps for standard streaming and 5 Mbps for high-quality streaming.
BBC iPlayer only offers a handful of programs in UHD (4K) but is constantly testing 4K programming. You will always see different shows in 4K on the iPlayer. For experiencing your favorite shows in 4K, the BBC recommends an internet speed of 24 Mbps.
Bear in mind that BBC iPlayer uses an Adaptive Bitrate (ABR) technology on some devices. It can automatically adjust the quality of the video to match the bandwidth available and avoid buffering.
Why Does My BBC iPlayer Buffer
There are a couple of reasons why your BBC iPlayer keeps buffering. The most common reasons are as follows:
- Poor internet speed or unstable internet connection
- Multiple devices connected to the internet or streaming simultaneously
- An outdated BBC iPlayer app or an outdated web browser
- Video quality (HD or UHD)
- Peering issues between the CDN (Content Delivery Network) and the ISP (Internet Service Provider)
- Geo-restricted locations
- Cache memory
- A problematic streaming device
How Do I Stop BBC iPlayer from Buffering
To stop the BBC iPlayer from buffering, here are some possible solutions:
Check your internet speed
The buffering of a video may slow down the playback speed or stop it completely due to insufficient bandwidth. Firstly, check your internet connection to find out if there are any issues, such as a slow speed or disconnections.
Test your internet speed online. This will assure you whether your poor internet speed is causing buffering issues. If your internet speed is poor, the following solutions should help lessen the occurrence of buffering problems:
Disconnect your streaming device from the internet and then reconnect.
- Restart your router and modem
- Restart your device
- Change the position of the router.
- Change the WiFi channel.
- Disconnect all other devices connected to the same internet.
- Avoid watching BBC iPlayer during peak hours.
- Upgrade your internet plan
- Invest in the WiFi range extender
Use a different browser
Sometimes BBC iPlayer fails to work because of a faulty web browser. If you are having trouble loading BBC iPlayer with a browser on your computer, mobile, or tablet, try using a different web browser. This may help you fix buffering issues. Also, make sure your laptop or computer has a compatible internet browser.
Updating your current browser might also help resolve the issue. To update your Chrome browser, follow these steps:
- Open Google Chrome and click on three dots on the top right corner
- Navigate to Help and click About Google Chrome
- If the update is available, Chrome will start updating automatically
- Once completed, click on the Relaunch button to finish updating
Reduce video quality
BBC iPlayer keeps buffering issue can also be caused due to High Definition programs running on the internet that is not strong enough to support HD quality videos. These HD programs need more bandwidth. Therefore, it is necessary to reduce the video quality and switch to Standard Definition (SD) to watch your favorite content without any delays or buffering.
To switch to SD quality on your Smart TV:
- Open the BBC iPlayer and go to Settings
- Go to Video Quality
- Select Standard Definition
To change the video quality on your laptop or computer:
- Click on the Settings icon in the playback bar
- Click on Video Quality
- Choose Low or Medium
Update the iPlayer app
The BBC iPlayer app is regularly updated with new features, fixes, and performance enhancements. If the app is not updated on your mobile or Smart TV, you may experience buffering issues.
To update the iPlayer app on your Smart TV:
- From your remote, press the Home button to go to Home Screen on your TV
- Go to Settings
- Navigate to Apps and click on My Apps
- Select the BBC iPlayer app and open the sub-menu by pressing and holding the Enter button on your remote
- Select Update App to start updating the application
To update the app on your mobile:
- Go to the Play Store
- Tap on your profile and select Manage Apps & Devices
- Under the Overview section, you will find Updates Available
- Click on it to see if the BBC iPlayer is on the list of the apps
- If yes, tap on it to update
You can also resolve the BBC iPlayer keeps buffering issue by clearing the cache data.
To clear the cache of the app on your Android mobile:
- Go to Settings and select Apps & Notifications
- Click on See All Apps and look out for the BBC iPlayer
- Click on the app and select Storage & Cache
- Select Clear Cache to remove all the cache data of the app.
If nothing works, download programs from the BBC iPlayer if you live in the UK and want to watch your favorite content offline.
BBC iPlayer is one of the most popular video-on-demand services that allows you to watch your favorite content anytime. However, it can be frustrating when the service buffers. Hopefully, this guide has been helpful, and you are now able to stream content without any buffering issues.