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How Much Data Does a Zoom Meeting Use?
Whether we like it or not, Zoom has pretty much become a part of our daily lives. In fact, I have to hop on a Zoom call in about 20 minutes, so let’s answer this question quickly. Just kidding (but I really do have the meeting).
To avoid your face freezing midconversation and your voice suddenly remixing into a weird Daft Punk song, you’ll want sufficient internet data for your Zoom conversations to run smoothly. Let’s answer how much data does a Zoom meeting use.
Zoom internet recommendations
Per Zoom’s website, here are all the internet bandwidth requirements for different activities on Zoom
For 1:1 video calling:
- 600kbps (up/down) for high quality video
- 1.2 Mbps (up/down) for 720p HD video
- Receiving 1080p HD video requires 1.8 Mbps (up/down)
- Sending 1080p HD video requires 1.8 Mbps (up/down)
For group video calling:
- 600kbps/1.0Mbps (up/down) for high quality video
- Gallery receiving view: 2.0Mbps (25 views) and 4.0Mbps (49 views)
- 1080p HD video requires 3.8Mbps/3.0Mbps (up/down)
- 720p HD video requires 2.6Mbps/1.8Mbps (up/down)
For screen sharing only (no video thumbnail): 50–75kbps
- For screen sharing with video thumbnail: 50–150kbps
- For audio VoiP: 60–80kbps
For webinar attendees:
- For panelists with their video on:
- High-quality video: 600kbps
- 720p HD video: 1.2-1.8Mbps(down)
- 1080p HD video: 2-3Mbps
- Screen sharing only (no video thumbnail): 50-7kbps(down)
- Screen sharing with video thumbnail: 50-150kbps(down)
- For panelists with their video on:
For Zoom Phone: 60–100kbps
How much data does a Zoom call use?
That was a lot of technical jargon above, so let’s make this information a bit more digestible. Here’s a breakdown of internet speed measurements.
- 1 megabit (MB) = 1000 kilobytes (Kb)
- 1 megabyte (MB) = 8 megabits (Mb)
- 1 gigabyte (GB) = 1,000 megabytes (MB)
Now that we’ve got an idea of the measurements, let’s take a closer look at how much data Zoom uses depending upon the quality of your stream, and how many people are in the meeting.
You need both download and upload speeds to run Zoom. Your download speeds affect what you can see, and upload speeds affect how other people on the call can see you. The higher your upload speeds, the smoother you’ll broadcast yourself to other people on the call. The higher the download speeds, the more clear you’ll be able to see and hear everyone else on the call.
You use somewhere between 540 MB and 1.62 GB per hour (between 9 MB and 27 MB per minute) for a 1:1 Zoom meeting, depending upon the streaming quality.
Your Zoom data usage jumps up with more people on the call. Group Zoom meetings take up somewhere between 810 MB and 2.4 GB per hour, or between 13.5 MB and 40 MB per minute.
If you're noticing consistent lagging in your Zoom meetings, but your internet is working just fine then there are a few things you can do to reduce the data that Zoom needs. You can try turning your video off, and keeping your audio on mute when you're not using it. You can also change the video quality in settings and turn off the HD video.
To put those numbers in context, take a look at how much data is used for other everyday activities.
Amount of data used
4K video streaming
HD video streaming
SD video streaming
Uploading one image to social media
Sending emails (without attachment)
Sending emails (with standard attachment)
Viewing a web page
Based on AT&T data calculator estimates. Amounts may vary.
Zoom streaming is fairly comparable to normal video streaming, but since upload speeds are part of the equation, a Zoom stream does take up more data than streaming Netflix.
Struggling with your Zoom calls?
If your internet is having a hard time keeping up with Zoom calls, then you might want to see what other options are available in your area. You might be paying too much for a lousy internet connection, and there might be some better options for you. Our internet expert Catherine recommends Xfinity internet as the best internet provider.
You can find out if Xfinity internet is available in your neighborhood by entering your ZIP code below. Even if you don't have Xfinity in your area, you can enter your ZIP and find out what internet providers are in your area.
Potentially use less data with a different video conferencing platform.