How To Reduce Data Usage On Your Amazon Fire TV Stick

The Amazon Fire TV Stick allows you to watch more than half a million movies and TV episodes on your TV. The third generation Fire TV Stick is 50% more powerful than the second generation and allows you to watch content in full HD compared to the previous generations.

Given that you can watch media in high definition, some of the most common questions about the Fire TV Stick are around Wi-Fi and data usage, especially from those user who are on a capped internet data/bandwidth plan.

In this article we will go over some of the most common questions about how much data the Fire TV Stick uses and ways in which you can reduce the Fire TV Stick’s overall data usage. But before we start, it’s important to know that each video quality tier will require a different amount of data, to watch the same content. We’ll start by going over that, and then covering all the other common questions.

What is the minimum Internet speed connection I need for streaming video?

Basic streaming in standard definition will require you to have at least a 3 Mbps connection. Here are the suggested broadband speeds you will need for different types of streaming:

1.5 Megabits per secondMinimum broadband connection speed
3.0 Megabits per secondRecommended for SD (standard definition) quality
5.0 Megabits per secondRecommended for HD (high definition) quality
25 Megabits per secondRecommended for 4K quality
Internet speed requirements for different video quality tiers

Keep in mind that if you have multiple devices that are streaming video at the same time then your connection speed will need to be even higher to accommodate for the higher number of devices all streaming simultaneously.

Does the Amazon Fire TV Stick Use A Lot Of Wi-Fi Data?

The amount of Wi-Fi data that the firestick uses really depends on the amount of streaming that you do, and the video quality of the content that’s streamed.

The fire TV stick will always stream content in the best quality possible but you can always adjust that and choose a lower or higher quality through the settings. Here’s how much data is consumed for different tiers of video quality:

4K Video6-7 GB/hour
“Best” Quality3.5 GB/hour
“Better” Quality1.5 GB/hour
“Good” Quality900 MB/hour
Data used per hour of streaming content, by video quality

So for example if you watch about two hours of high definition content every night that means you would be using about 210 gigabytes of data per month (3.5 GB/hour x 2 hours x 30 days = 210 GB total). As mentioned above, if you also have other devices that are getting streaming content those devices would consume additional data every month as well .

How to Change the Video Resolution on Your Amazon Fire TV Stick

You can increase or decrease the resolution of your video quality by completing the following steps:

  1. Navigate to the Menu
  2. Select Display and Sounds
  3. Select Video Resolution
  4. From there you can select the appropriate quality that you want

How to Track the Amount of Data that Your Amazon Fire TV Stick Uses

You can track the amount of data your Fire TV Stick uses by completing the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Settings
  2. Select Preferences
  3. Select Data Monitoring and toggle the switch to “On”

You can also check the amount of data you consume every month by going to Monthly Top Data Usage from the Data Monitoring Page.

How to Turn Off Fire TV Stick Auto-Updates To Save Storage Space and Data

The Fire TV Stick will auto update all the apps by default. While this allows you to stay up to date automatically it also consumes additional storage space and data.

You can disable this feature by completing the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Settings
  2. Select Applications
  3. Select the App Store from the dropdown
  4. Turn off the toggle switch next to “Automatic Updates

How to Turn Off Advertisements On Your Fire TV Stick To Save Data

You may have noticed that you see ads on your homepage. These are curated and displayed by Amazon. They’ll not only make your Fire TV Stick slower, but they will also contribute to higher data consumption. You can disable these ads by completing the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Settings
  2. Select Preferences
  3. Select Privacy Settings
  4. Select Interest Based Apps and turn off the toggle switch next to it

How to Turn Off Autoplay on Your Fire TV Stick to Save Data

You may have noticed that there are trailers of Amazon prime movies and TV shows playing automatically when you are on the home page. While this can be a nice feature, it also uses a lot of data. You can disable this autoplay feature by completing the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Settings
  2. Select Preferences
  3. Click on Featured Content
  4. Turn off the Allow Video Play Option and also turn off the Allow Audio Play option

Why Does the Fire TV Stick Use So Much Data?

Streaming video requires a lot of data to render the images, motions, and effects, especially when watching in high definition. The higher the video quality, the more data is transferred from the servers to your device.

Is It OK To Leave The Amazon Fire Tv Stick Plugged In All the Time?

If the TV is off the Fire TV Stick may still use small amounts of data, but nowhere near the same amount it uses when you’re streaming a TV show or movie. If you want to ensure that the Fire TV Stick uses no data at all, then make sure to use a power strip that you can turn off to ensure that no power is entering the device.

In terms of energy savings the Fire TV Stick does have a low power mode, and will automatically enter into this state when it goes to sleep.

Can You Use the Fire TV Stick Without Wi-Fi?

Yes you can, if you have installed apps like VLC Media Player, you can be disconnected from the internet but still render media such as videos, pictures, and music from a USB connected device such as a hard drive or USB stick, or even the Fire TV Stick’s own internal storage. However you will not be able to stream TV shows and movies from the Internet.

You can also use the Fire TV stick without Wi-Fi by using the Kodi app. Because the Fire TV Stick runs a modified version of Android, you are able to use offline apps such as Kodi and Retroarch by going to Settings > Applications > Manage Installed Applications. From there you can launch the offline app that you want to use.

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