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Do bigger computer screens use more bandwidth?

by jj97403 / February 17, 2013 12:32 AM PST

Do bigger screens consumer more bandwidth than smaller screens?

Or is size irrelevant and the determining factor is screen's resolution?

If screen resolution is the determining factor, would a tablet, a PC, and a laptop, each with different screen sizes but resolution set to 1024 x 768, use equal bandwidth?


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All Answers

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Re: bandwidth
by Kees_B Forum moderator / February 17, 2013 12:46 AM PST

If you're talking about data communication bandwidth (the number of bits going over the ADSL-line or between your wireless router and the device) it's fully determined by the source. That sends the whole picture, and the browser scales it to what it needs.

With an iPad it's a little bit more complicated. With the new high-resolution display (more pixels) an app may decide to load a higher resolution picture, which has more bits to uses more bandwidth.


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tethering phone
by jj97403 / February 17, 2013 4:31 AM PST
In reply to: Re: bandwidth

Thanks for the comment!

I have a 2GB cap for my cell phone, and occasionally if I tether a hotspot from it to briefly do some very light text browsing with my PC, laptop, or tablet. I use opera turbo, turn images off, and keep all the background and auto updates turned off (to the best of my ability).

When tethering from my phone, I was wondering if using my desktop PC eats up more bandwidth than my laptop or tablet. I was also wondering if there would be any impact if I used my laptop with a second monitor.

I was reading in another post that it is analogous to a film projector and how just physically moving the projector closer to the wall doesn't change the resolution or amount of data, and I think that is what you mean by "it all depends on the source." However, I am still not sure how that translates into whether or not using a larger or smaller screen consumes more or less data gets you closer to your data cap. If you just lower your monitor's resolution does that conserve your data-bandwidth-cap-limit, or am I completely missing the point? (Have patience with me).

Any chance I could ask you to kindly clarify now that i explained in a little bit more detail my situation.


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Re: it depends on the source.
by Kees_B Forum moderator / February 17, 2013 4:33 PM PST
In reply to: tethering phone

With "source" I meant the picture you download. And what you download does NOT depend on the size of the screen (in inches) nor on the resolution of the screen (in pixels). It's a property of the picture the link points to. Nothing you can do about it.


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so bandwidth consumption is same on both phone & PC?
by jj97403 / February 18, 2013 4:20 AM PST


One last question if you can tolerate my pigheadedness: Does that mean streaming youtube on your phone uses the same amount of data as streaming it on a 20" LCD screen?

I understand downloading a 20 mb file is a 20 mb file no matter what device you are using. I am just getting tripped up on conceptualizing that browsing or streaming on your phone consumes the same bandwidth as browsing or streaming on a 20 inch lcd monitor. I know that "browsing" and "streaming" youtube are just "downloading bits and bytes of data too," but for some pigheaded reason I would think browsing or streaming on your phone would use less bandwidth. (If for no other reason, because your phone's screen resolution is so much lower).

Thanks again.

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