Several users have reported an issue in which YouTube content downloads extremely slowly, even over otherwise speedy WiFi connections, on the iPhone. In fact, YouTube videos generally download much more quickly over a 3G connection for afflicted users.
A few sample reports from this Apple Discussions thread:
- "Everything else is fast, but Youtube is so slow I don't use it. If I switch to 3g it's very fast, but wifi forget it."
- "I'm having the same problem: safari is fast, speedtests show my connection to be fine, but when the YouTube app is running over wifi, it runs SLOW. YouTube is fine in safari on my other computers."
- "Same problem right here. I can use the Internet just fine speed tests give good results However YouTube app performance is 10-20 times slower than on 3G. "
The issue may be restricted to iPhone 3Gs. One user writes:
"I have been having the same problem as listed here... i still have the original iphone running 1.1.4 and a 3g running the latest update. So i thought i would do a test. I put the two phones side by side and tried to watch the same 2 minute clip. The 1.1.4 phone streamed it seamlessly while the 3g struggled to keep up. old phone had buffered the whole clip while the 3g had only buffered about 1/4."
You can test your iPhone's throughput at http://testmyiphone.com/. Try comparing 3G and WiFi. If your WiFi connection doesn't deliver on-par speeds, try changing your wireless router settings from 802.11b+g to 802.11b.
You can also try setting using OpenDNS rather than my local ISP DNS servers. Instructions for doing so are here.