Everything you need to know about the Video Data Extender

A woman is shown in a resolution comparison for the Exede Internet Data Extender.

All Exede service plans (except unlimited data plans) have a new feature kicking off this week. It’s called the Video Data Extender, and it’s aimed at giving you the ability to stream more online video using a lot less data. All Exede customers will have this feature automatically activated throughout the fall of 2017, starting on Oct. 17. Log in to MyExede.net to see if your account has been activated.

Think of the Video Data Extender as one of those water-saving devices on your shower or sprinkler, which let you get the same job done, only using less water. Or, compare it to getting a more fuel-efficient car: You can drive the same speed to reach your destination, but you burn less fuel in the process. We think the Video Data Extender is a great tool to help you maximize the data you pay for and get more out of your service.

 

How does it work?

The Video Data Extender optimizes all video streaming over your Exede service to a screen resolution of 480p, which is DVD quality. The best part is that by having the Video Data Extender enabled, you’ll save quite a bit of data, making it less likely you’ll hit your monthly data allowance and have your speeds slowed.

 

How much data can I save?

Quite a bit! A typical HD stream can use approximately 1.3 gigabytes of data in a single hour, whereas that same hour streamed in 480p might use only .5 GB. That’s data you can use to stream more video, download stuff or video-chat with your uncle in Australia!

 

Will I notice the difference in quality?

That depends on two things:

  1. The type of video you’re watching; and
  2. The device you’re watching it on.

If you’re watching video on a smart phone or tablet, it’s likely you’ll find the 480p quality to be fine for nearly everything. On devices with bigger screens, most content will still look pretty good – even on larger TVs. However, videos with a lot of action – like a sports event – might make the lower resolution more noticeable. See for yourself with the video comparison on this page.

 

What types of video look good at 480p? See for yourself!

Typically shows that don’t have a lot of fast movement or complex graphics look just fine at this DVD quality. Here are some examples:

  • Talk and news shows
  • Cartoons/animated shows
  • Movies like romantic comedies, dramas, and documentaries
  • Game shows
  • TV series like comedies and dramas

 

When you want higher quality video, just turn it off

The Video Data Extender is automatically enabled, but you can switch it off if you want to watch something in higher definition. You’ll use more data, of course, but it’s a good option if you want to watch something – like an action movie or a football game – in full HD. We highly recommend turning it back on when you’re done with your movie so you can get the benefits of the Video Data Extender during the rest of the month.

 

How do I turn the Video Data Extender on or off?

The Video Data Extender is automatically enabled on all Exede accounts with the exception of unlimited data plans. To turn it off, you have a few choices:

  • Go to MyExede.net and you’ll see the option to toggle it off/on on the dashboard and also on the data usage page.
  • Text VIDEO to 20715 and follow the prompts. You’ll need to register for text messaging first, which you can do by texting JOIN to 20715.
  • Go to our EasyChat chatbot on Facebook messenger and type ‘Video’. You’ll first need to register for EasyChat with these instructions.

 

Can I turn it off and keep it off?

Yes. If you don’t watch a lot of video or have one of our higher-end data plans, you might decide to turn off the Video Data Extender and leave it off. That’s up to you. Remember, you can always keep track of your data at MyExede.net or via Exede Text Alerts. With Video Data Extender disabled, you will consume data much faster.

 

How much data will I use if I turn it off?

The simple answer is a lot – video uses more data than anything else on the internet.

The complicated answer is that it depends on what you’re watching and the service you’re getting it from.

  • Short YouTube videos typically don’t use a ton of data, and you can adjust the resolution up and down on each video.
  • Netflix, if you have it set to “Automatic” (the default setting), streams at a very high rate, possibly using 1-3 GB an hour. You can adjust your Netflix resolution in the account settings.
  • Other services like Hulu and Amazon Prime usually push the highest quality of video possible, which consumes a lot of data. Check to see if these or any other video services you’re using have the ability to adjust resolution.

The benefit of using the Video Data Extender is that you don’t have to worry about configuring all those different services – it takes care of all of them, automatically.

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