Playbook poor streaming performance w/ low bandwidth internet
This has nothing to do with wifi speeds on the Playbook or the like, but rather how the Playbook performs at streaming audio/video when connected to a wifi access point which may be connected to a limited bandwidth internet link (for example, a 3G hotspot with about 1Mbit/sec average speed)..
For example, I have a 3G router on Wind Mobile's "unlimited" 3G internet plan.. Wind's network in my area gives speeds of up to 3Mbit/s, but you're more likely to get around 1-1.5 Mbit/s on average.. Further, once you use more than 10Gb of data, they throttle your connection down to 256kbit/s.. When you're getting 1Mbit/s+, the Playbook streams audio and video reasonably well, but there are still occasionally stutters and pauses and video sometimes drop several seconds worth of frames, and occasionally, you still get the "This media is loading very slowly. It may not be possible to play with this connection." dialog box.. Once you hit the throttle limit, it is virtually impossible to stream any kind of media on the Playbook with major stuttering and pauses..
By contrast, when connected to the same 3G router with my old 1.5GHz dual core laptop running Windows 7 with FireFox and Adobe Flash, I am able to stream audio and video from the same sites, whether I hit the throttle limit or not, with virtually no impact, an occasional stutter here and there, but in general, the connection is still perfectly usable for standard def video.. For instance, right now, I've used up my 10Gb full speed quota,and I'm being throttled at 256kbit/s, which means the Playbook is just about useless for multimedia. I'm typing this post on my Playbook, which is about all it's usable for when the throttle kicks in, but over on my laptop, I'm watching an old streaming video episode of Airwolf.. Quite a difference..
So there's got to be something about the Playbook's multimedia subsystem/Adobe Flash implementation that is causing this performance discrepancy.. It's not just video, even audio is impacted: podiobooks has problems streaming to the Playbook when throttled, but works fine on the PC..
Anyone else noticing the same thing? This is something RIM really needs to fix on this platform..
- 06-10-2012, 08:32 PM #2
Ok.... So you expected great performance streaming from a low bandwith/poor performance connection?
In before the lock...
- CrackBerry User
06-10-2012, 09:17 PM #3
- 11 Posts
- CrackBerry Genius
06-10-2012, 09:21 PM #4
- 2,309 Posts
Maybe try going here Internet Speedtest | Bandwidth Speed Test | IP-Adress.com to test your internet speeds on both your PB and your laptop, and see how their download speeds compare. Then try moving to a different location and retaking the test. Your proximity to your router or lack thereof can significantly affect download speeds.
- CrackBerry Master
06-10-2012, 09:26 PM #5
- 1,394 Posts
You should check with Wind Mobile... as your issue is when streaming the same content it makes no sense that one would hit the data cap on your PB and not laptop.... one other possibility is that is you are using the PB browser the steaming service will recognze you device as mobile as opposed to standard laptop browser... could handle data differently between mobile and laptop.... good luck with however it works out....
I haven't updated my profile, but I do own two Playbooks, and you completely misunderstand, I'm not expecting great performance, but it should at least be on par with what I'm seeing on a laptop connected to the same service..
And there's no difference in network speed from the Playbook to the laptop because bothare connected to the same 3G router; the difference is what the playbook and the laptop do with the bandwidth: the Playbook needs a connection that delivers at least 1Mbit/s to stream without pausing and stuttering; whereas the laptop can manage just fine showing standard def video at these lower rates.. I suspect that RIM has tweaked their implementation of Mobile Flash to request higher def/high bandwidth content at all times whereas the PC version can adapt to lower bandwidth cases, which in my opinion is the wrong thing to do.. I always prefer to get content delivery, even if it's lower quality, than to not get it at all..
On the other hand, if I connect to a wifi connected to a fast broadband service, then playbook works just fine, and I can open multiple media connections too; I'm talking instead about the case where the wifi connection is low bandwidth- in such a case, the Playbook is horrible..
- CrackBerry User
06-10-2012, 10:23 PM #7
- 52 Posts
As much as i love my pb, i must agree with streaming issues as well...have had the same issues being 4 feet and 40 feet from my router....for me it seems the browser chokes up...and yes i have repeatedly cleared the cache when this happens...it quite honestly seems random as to when it works well vs chokes...my laptop however stays consistent and my dl speeds stay relatively constant....all that being said still cant say enough great things about my pb..
- CrackBerry Abuser
06-10-2012, 11:49 PM #9
- 391 Posts
- Just Pin It.
I'm on dsl 5g/800m and don't have streaming probs...have even vid chatted to another PB also on a similar dsl connection with no probs.
256m is pretty slow plus does your provider content throttle as well?
Don't think u have a PB prob but u might clear the browser cache and local storage next time.
Everyone likes to shoot at the company before the look at their own mistakes...I'm just saying...
You may need to upgrade your data plan or change your online habits to get away from throttling issues..______________________________________
To resist the influence of others the knowledge of oneself is of most importance.
Teal'c on Stargate SG-1 Season 9 Episode 14
Information Technology is fun, play with IT!
- CrackBerry User
06-11-2012, 12:10 AM #11
- 52 Posts
Its not a throttle issue nor a router/provider issue...something about the way the browser buffers is quirky. When i have my 2 pbs and my laptop stream the same thing at the same time, one pb will choke up, sometimes both, however the laptop continues no issue...i am on shaws largest bandwidth pipe they offer for residential, and have a top end router....the only possible conclusion is the pb browsers have buffering challenges.....as stated, wouldnt trade my pb for anything else, but not saying they are flawless either
- CrackBerry Abuser
06-11-2012, 02:06 AM #12
- 110 Posts
- 06-11-2012, 02:19 AM #13
There are a million different reasons why the OP is experiencing this.
(1) tablets have single stream wifi vs. laptops have dual stream wifi
(2) laptop computers have more powerful CPU, with more RAM, with more hard drive space to prefetch more streaming data
(3) laptop computers have newer adobe flash player (now at 11.3).
I've actually tried the Android Dolphin browser on the Playbook using an iPad user agent (and there's no Flash in the Android player anyways), and *if* there's a non-Flash version of the media available (despite Apple's tactics, the vast majority of non-subscription media is still Flash based), its video playback usually works reasonably well in low bandwidth situations, *BUT*, it looks like there's some sort of transcoding or something going on: the video shown by Dolphin is always full screen, but of much lower quality, no matter what the source (eg, an HD web site), so it's difficult to compare.. At least on a PC vs. the PlayBook native browser, you're doing a more-or-less head-to-head comparison of two Flash engines..
And to those who say get a faster connection- I do have a broadband connection, but I also have mobile data so I can stay connected while on the road, and there's plenty of situations where the connection you have access to may not be super high bandwidth: Many hotel chains have substandard internet, or your room may be right on the edge of WiFi coverage.. Many free public access points also have limited bandwidth (either intentionally, via throttling or QoS controls, or simply because of lack of budget for anything faster).. Lots of other places and situations may result in limited bandwidth. If you are fortunate enough to have high bandwidth all the time, then good for you, but don't assume that it's available to everyone, everywhere.. And again, the PC still seems to handle these low-bandwidth conditions much better than the PlayBook is able to.. Yes, there's a difference in CPU and memory, but CPU is IMO, not a major factor, especially if you're just trying to stream a single standard def video and not trying to do multiple media tasks at once: the dual core ARM in the Playbook is a pretty darned capable processor. Memory for buffering I can believe, but I still think there was probably a bit of a design choice on the Playbook to request better quality video to highlight its HD capability, but at the end of the day, I don't really care if it's HD or not, if I can't access my media.. In terms of memory though, I think one of the things RIM has to do is improve the memory management on the Playbook and allow paging, so that unused components can be paged out and the physical memory used for buffering, etc, vs. everything having to fit in the physical memory.