Does everyone have to wait for a YouTube video to buffer, or are you the only one? Thanks to a new tool from Google, you can now see for yourself.
Google’s Video Quality Report is a new tool that provides information on your ISP’s performance when it comes to streaming YouTube videos, and lets you see how it stacks up to other popular ISPs in your area.
The tool ranks ISPs based on the video quality that most customers of various popular service providers can reliably stream. It also displays other information, like the percentage of customers that can stream a 720p HD video stream reliably on average throughout the day, as well as the peak video streaming hours.
A troubleshooting tips page provides you with information on how you can make sure you’re getting the fastest video stream possible. The site also provides an overview of how a video stream gets from the server to your home—useful if you aren’t well versed in the intricacies of networking technology.
Of course, there are some limitations: the Video Quality Report provides information about an ISP in broad strokes—it doesn’t give specifics on your connection quality, which does make it less useful than it could be since connection speeds can vary depending on where you live).
Still, the information it provides is useful, and who knows? Maybe it’ll help convince slow-performing ISPs to up their game.