Video Issues – Low Quality / Call Dropouts

Internet Connection #

Video call quality/stability is primarily determined by the speed and quality of the internet connections that you and your client have.

The video conferencing technology we use works on a peer-to-peer model, this means that once our servers have done an ‘introduction’ at the start of the call to allow your computers to find each other, the video call connection is then direct between therapist and client devices – it does not pass through our servers.

If you or your client are using a slow or poor quality internet connection, then this is the most likely cause of call quality or reliability issues.

If you normally have good quality calls but then have a session with a client where the video quality is problematic, then this is likely due to you client’s internet connection.

Device Speed #

Another factor that contributes to video quality, is the speed of your and your client’s computer/device. Video calls use a lot of processing power and memory and if your device is old or ‘clogged up’ with too many tasks or open programs, it will sometimes need to sacrifice video quality in order to keep the video call running.

Steps to resolve (for therapist and client) #

  • During a call – if call quality starts degrading during a session both therapist and client should try refreshing the webpage to reset the call connection
  • Pre-call test – Run our diagnostic test to help ensure your system is set up correctly for a video call – https://app.bilateralbase.com/pre-call-test
  • Internet speed test – Check speed of internet connection using a service like https://www.speedtest.net – your connection speed for upload and download should be at least 2Mbps
  • Close unused programs – Close down any programs that you aren’t using as part of your call to free up processor and memory
  • Restart your computer – This can help to speed up your computer, especially if it hasn’t been restarted in a while.
  • Turn off low power mode – some devices, especially laptop try to save battery power by reducing their speed. When possible, make sure your are plugged into the mains
  • Avoid using mobile internet – using a mobile internet connection through a phone or ‘dongle’ can be problematic as they can often be slower and less reliable (although 5G mobile internet speeds are making this less problematic where they are available). Try to use a landline-based broadband connection when possible.
  • Move closer to Wifi – If you’re using wifi to connect your computer to the internet, then the quality of the signal between your device and your WiFi router can have a big impact on your internet speed. Walls are especially good at blocking WiFi signals. Ideally you should be in the same room as your Wifi router but to have a maximum of one wall in between.
  • Connect to router with a cable – Being connected to your router with a wire can provide you with a significantly faster and more stable connection
  • Ask other users to keep the internet connection clear – If there are other people (e.g. family members) using the internet connection at the same time this can impact the quality of your video call. Avoid having anyone doing data intensive activities like, video streaming, video calls or gaming while you are running a session.