Ookla announced today that Speedtest’s iOS app can now benchmark the quality of Internet video streaming. While previously the service used to check general connection metrics, such as maximum download and upload speeds and latency, the new test was specifically aimed at the growing focus on web video, which experimented with streaming at a variety of resolutions and then measured load time and buffering efficiency.
Ookla explained that the new test was added because more and more of the time we spend on the Internet involves streaming video. While its standard speed tests give an idea of overall network bandwidth, Ookla points out that ISPs often set QoS policies specifically for video traffic, making it behave differently from other traffic. This means that the best way to benchmark video streaming performance ends up being just a streaming video sample, because it “can’t really be simulated over the network.”
The video streaming test is currently only available on the service’s iOS app, though Ookla says it will be available on more platforms soon. During the test, the app streamed video at various resolutions and then listed details like the maximum resolution of a user’s Internet connection and the loading time of the video stream. If the network speed is fast enough to support streaming video, but still can’t stream the video smoothly, Ookla says the app will automatically link to DownDetector to check if any of the services are experiencing a problem.
Speedtest’s video streaming benchmarks are available through the service’s latest iOS update, as well as a slight redesign of the interface.