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    keyboard smash

    Is your live video fuzzy? Is the video of the teacher glitching for you, but no one else? Take a look at some information below. Maybe it can help. 

    Webcams:
    • The newness and quality of a webcam is what makes the video image clearer or sharper. Light in front of your face vs behind or on the side of your face, will also help the video clarity. Sharpness and clarity will affect words being read on whiteboards behind you. 
    • In Google Meet, click on the 3 dots in the bottom right corner > settings > video. Change the resolution to "720 high definition." It may make the video sharper, but that setting may not save for future "meets." You may need to be change it in every "Google Meet" session. 
    • If a webcam is an older model, changing the video settings in Google Meet to "HD" vs "standard" will not improve the sharpness of the video. It will actually make it worse. 

     

    Audio Settings:

    • If you're having trouble hearing videos, or no one can hear you when you're speaking, watch the video to see what you can try to do to fix it. 

     

    Internet Connection: 
    • Being plugged into an ethernet cord in your house, is where you'll get the fastest internet speed in your house. If you are connecting wirelessly, you need to be close to your router. 
    • How the internet is dispersed to you, affects your internet speed. Ex: Metronet sends the internet from their hub directly to your house, whereas Comcast sends it from their hub, to a box, then from that box to your house. In this example, Comcast internet would likely be slower, because there's a stop before reaching your house. 
    • Check your internet speed here: https://www.speedtest.net/ The higher number the better (Ex: above 75 mbps is strong). Single digit numbers for download speed are not good. A lower speed could be the cause of videos lagging, getting kicked off of live videos, and glitchiness. 
    • The amount of devices running on your wi-fi at one time, can slow down the speed. Ex: phones, computers, TVs, video game consoles, etc. Ex: If 5 people in the house are all on a device using the wi-fi, it may work slower or be glitchy. 
    • Know the details of your wi-fi. Ex: We had two wi-fis in our house. One was stronger at a shorter range. The other was less strong but reached to our second floor, so all our upstairs devices were attached to it. But it was so far from the router, that the connection wasn't enough to support seamless video calls. My strong internet connection downstairs, did not mean the connection upstairs was also strong, it was in fact much weaker. 
    • If your router is on the opposite end of the house from your remote workspace, installing another router or similar device near your workspace can help the strength of your internet.  
    • The newness and quality of the machine you're working on also affects the speed things move on your device (model of chromebook, laptop, PC, etc.). So if you find your internet speed is strong, then compare devices in your house from the same space in the house. (Ex: compare both chromebook models from your dining room table). Ex: the Samsung chromebook I got in May 2019 is a poorer quality than the Acer chromebook I am borrowing from the district. I tested them both from the same location in my house, and got very different results. 

     

     
    For the record, my district-provided chromebook is working great. The webcam quality and speed of the machine is great for supporting multiple windows being open at once, while also hosting live video sessions. 
     
    It is also understood that identifying the problem, doesn't mean there is an easily attainable solution for every family. Some of the solutions are easier to troubleshoot than others. I hope that by trying some of these out, you have some luck :) And if not, we must all be patient with one another, and understand we are all juggling different circumstances. We will get through this together!