Remote Learner Center » Internet Connection - What is required?

Internet Connection - What is required?

Can my home connection handle a Teams call?
Bandwidth is often associated with the "speed" of your internet connection.  In short, bandwidth describes how much data can travel across your connection at a time.  In our area most families have either DSL, Fiber optic, Cable, or Cellular connections.  Unfortunately, connectivity may vary depending upon where you live.  You may want to contact your internet service provider to get more information about the type of connection you have available.  To understand if your connection will support a Teams call, you need to understand your connections upload and download speeds.  Upload is the speed at which your connection can send data from your home to the internet.  Download is the speed at which your connection can receive data from the internet.  
To have a successful Teams connection you need at a minimum of 500kbps upload and 1Mbps download.  This is typically less than the base packages offered by our local internet service providers.  For example, a Twin Lakes DSL connection typically is no less that 1Mbps up and 4Mbps down.  the base package for a Twin Lakes fiber optic package is 2Mbps up and 25Mbps down.  You can test your connection here.  
Tips for Conserving Bandwidth
While a student is on a Teams and bandwidth is a concern these tips may help free up some bandwidth or improve connectivity in your home.
  • Limit the number of connected devices.
  • Turn off Wi-fi on a device that is not being used.
  • Disconnect or shut down game consoles to prevent background downloads.
  • Disconnect smartTVs during a Teams call.
  • Limit the use of streaming TV - Some streaming services allow users to download shows and movies.  This could be done overnight and the shows could be watched during day, which would not impact bandwidth.
  • Ensure that your wireless network has a secure password to prevent unauthorized access to your network.
  • Your child may need to move their computer closer to the wireless router in your home during a Teams call.
  • Reset your router and modem about 15-20 minutes before the Teams call.

What students can do to save bandwidth?

Use the video camera sparingly, or not at all

When participating in a live class meeting, entirely avoid using the video camera; just turn on the microphone. Or only turn on your video camera when it's your turn to speak.

Sync files to your computer so you can read them offline

  1. In Teams, select the team whose files you want to sync.

  2. Select the Files tab at the top.

  3. Select Sync, and follow the on-screen prompts.

    Use the Sync button on the Files tab to synchronize all the files in the currently selected folder.

    By default, all files are available in the cloud, but not copied to your computer.

  4. Open File Explorer. In the left pane, navigate to your school name, and then click that node to expand it. Underneath will be the folder where your the sync'd local files are stored on your computer. In the example below, Contoso is the school:

  5. Find your sync'd files in File Explorer under the name of your school.

  6. Select the file or files you want to have available offline (that is, on your computer). Press and hold Ctrl while clicking if you want to select multiple files.

  7. Right-click your selection and choose Always keep on this device.


Sync files to your mobile device so you can read them offline

When you open a file in Teams on your mobile device, you can download it to your device so that can open it again later when you're offline:

  1. With the file open in Teams mobile, select the triple-dot More options button.

  2. From the menu that appears, select Make available offline  The file-download button in Teams.

Sync video files to your mobile device so you can watch them offline

If you have limited internet connectivity, the Offline feature in the Stream mobile app can be handy for watching videos:

  1. First, install the Microsoft Stream mobile app (from the App Store or Google Play) on your device.

  2. Sign in with your Microsoft 365 account.

  3. Click the Stream link your teacher provided, and the video will open in the Stream app.

  4. Once the video is loaded in the app, pause it and tap the download  The file-download button in Teams. icon below the video player.

  5. After the video has downloaded, you can tap the play button immediately for normal-speed playback, or you can find the video later under My Content > Offline.

    The Stream mobile app on an iPhone

Some resources pulled from Microsoft Support