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Is Your Wi-Fi Ready for the Big Game? Everything You Need to Know Before Sunday

Friends watching TV at home and cheering with arms raised
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The food is ready, the beverages are cracked, kickoff is moments away. The only thing that can stop you now is the dreaded buffering wheel. To make sure your watch party isn’t delayed by stuttering video, give your internet a quick audit to make sure it’s ready for primetime. 

Test your internet before game day

If you’re going to be watching Kansas City vs. Philadelphia through a live TV streaming service or the FOX Sports app, you’ll want to do a test run before Sunday. Here’s what you should look for. 

Determine what internet speed you need

Good news: streaming live TV doesn’t require a lot of bandwidth. You’ll need about 10 Mbps to stream in HD, and 20 Mbps to stream in 4K (only available through the FOX Sports app). That said, you’ll also want to consider what other devices will be using your Wi-Fi during the game. 

As a rule of thumb, add about 5 Mbps for every additional device on your Wi-Fi. So, if you’re having 10 people over to watch the game and you’re streaming it in 4K, you’ll want at least 70 Mbps of download speed. 

Run a speed test

You can figure out if your internet is up for the task by running a simple speed test. You’ll see three results: download speed, upload speed, and latency (also called ping). Your download speed is the most important number here — as long as you’re getting above 20 Mbps, you should be fine to stream the Big Game. 

Latency measures the amount of time it takes for your device — in this case your TV — to get a response from the server. It’s usually only a factor in online gaming, but if you see a ping rate above 150 ms, you might hear your neighbors cheering for a big play before you see it. 

Make sure your router is in a good spot

If your speed test results aren’t quite ready for kickoff, one of the simplest things you can do right away is to move the location of your Wi-Fi router. Try to get it as close to your TV as possible, and keep it away from concrete or brick walls. If possible, connect your TV to your modem with an Ethernet cable. (A 15-foot Ethernet cable runs about $9 on Amazon right now.)

Consider upgrading your router

If your Wi-Fi router is more than a few years old, your watch party might be a good excuse to upgrade. After a few years, it gets harder to update the software on older routers, which means its security features might not be up-to-date. Here are some of our favorite routers that are compatible with the major internet providers:

How to watch the Big Game

The Kansas City-Philadelphia game will start at 6:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 12 and will air on FOX. You have a few options for watching.

TV antenna

If you feel like going old school, a TV antenna is one of the most reliable options for viewing local channels like FOX. Unlike streaming, it’s not dependent on your internet connection at all.

Indoor TV antennas cost around $20, and can pull in dozens of local channels in HD, including heavy-hitters like ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC — all without any monthly fee. 

To see what channels you can pick up at your house, go to the FCC’s DTV Reception Maps page and enter your ZIP code. You can then click on the channels to see where the nearest broadcasting station is located, and determine what kind of range you need in your antenna. 

Live TV streaming service

There are several live TV streaming services available that will be streaming the game, and they all come with a free trial. Just make sure it’s compatible with your smart TV or streaming device, and remember to cancel before you’re charged for a full month.

ServicePrice*Free trial
DIRECTV STREAM$74.99/mo.5 days
fubo TV$74.99/mo.7 days
YouTube TV$64.99/mo.7-14 days
*Prices updated 02/06/23. Does not include taxes and fees.

Fox Sports app

If you know someone who subscribes to cable, satellite, or a live TV streaming service, you can use their login credentials to stream the game on the FOX Sports app or website.