How much bandwidth does Skype need?

The bandwidth required by Skype depends on the type of calls you want to make. The table below provides the minimum download and upload speeds required, as well as the recommended speeds for best performance.

Call type Minimum download
/ upload speed
Recommended download
/ upload speed
Calling 30kbps / 30kbps 100kbps / 100kbps
Video calling /
Screen sharing
128kbps / 128kbps 300kbps / 300kbps
Video calling
(high-quality)
400kbps / 400kbps 500kbps / 500kbps
Video calling
(HD)
1.2Mbps / 1.2Mbps 1.5Mbps / 1.5Mbps
Group video
(3 people)
512kbps / 128kbps 2Mbps / 512kbps
Group video
(5 people)
2Mbps / 128kbps 4Mbps / 512kbps
Group video
(7+ people)
4Mbps / 128kbps 8Mbps / 512kbps

If you are signed in to Skype but not making any calls, Skype will use on average 0-4kbps. When you make a call, Skype will use on average between 24-128kbps. You can find out how much bandwidth a video call is using.

To find out if your internet connection is fast enough to make a Skype call (using Skype for Windows Desktop):

  1. In the Contact list, select the contact you wish to call.
  2. In the conversation header, click the Check settings button.

  3. In the Connection tab, click Test Now.

  4. Skype will test the internet connection between you and your contact and display the results.

Audio calls should be possible with most internet connections. Video calls use a lot more bandwidth, so if you are having issues with the quality of your video calls, we recommend:

  • Closing other applications that use the internet, especially those playing music or video.
  • Cancelling any file transfers in progress.

If this does not resolve your problem, you may need to increase your bandwidth. Contact your Internet Service Provider if you need more information regarding your download and upload speeds.

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Did you know you can make video calls with three or more people anywhere in the world with Skype Premium? Find out more.

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