Bandwidth Concerns - Enforce Playback Quality

New Contributor

We have been throwing a variety of videos at Stream and bandwidth utilization is higher than other solutions we've tested. This is likely due to the fact that the playback quality level appears to auto-select the highest quality stream the user's connection can handle. Is there a way to disable the auto-select process and default playback to a specified quality level (say, 720p)? This would go a very long ways towards putting our network team's minds at ease. Thanks!

4 Replies

Currently, only a user can enforce their playback settings for a given video playback instance.


I would like to understand your scenario a bit better to make sure I understand what exactly you are looking for.  With Microsoft Stream, we do adaptive bitrate streaming which, in general, creates mutliple bitrates. Adaptive bitrate streaming generally is used to reduce the amount of buffering experienced by the client, while still reaching the best possible viewing experience.  Additionally, the bitrate selected is a combination of video player size and available bandwidth.  What this generally means is on the video playback page, you will generally have 720p streaming, unless users are in full screen mode or using a 4K monitor which would be around 1080p - and this is most likely your average bandwidth anyways.   


In order to save network bandwidth, you would not want video streaming to occur in 1080p? Or would you like to constantly force the bandwidth at 720p, because that would potentially cause negative affects to those who do not have enough bandwidth to stream at 720p - I assume your more looking for a max bitrate of 720p rather than a default value?  In both cases, would not encoding the video to include a 1080p version fix the issue?  What a about a lower quality encoding profile which your could set at the administrator level work? 


Thanks for the response, Amit.


A lower quality encoding profile that an administrator could set would work. Our current video platform maxes out at 720p and that's been sufficient for 95% of our users. Allowing that 5% (marketing teams, board members, etc) to encode at a higher quality so that some videos are higher quality would be even better.

Can you tell me where I can set the encoding bitrate at the "Administrator Level" ?

@Adam Ross - Thanks for your insights.  What is interesting here the split of encoding profiles based on who the user is.  I will kindly ask you to add this feature request to our ideas forum at 


@Nick Cook there isn't this capability available today.  Are you also looking for a way to limit the the bitrate to remove 1080p from the set of encoded videos? If you are looking for the same thing as Adam, I encourage you to vote on his idea