Buffering is when your media pre-loads portions of your streaming as you watch or listen. It is an important part of every streaming session, but it has become infamous because people associate it with causing interruptions.
The buffering process is only visible to users when it is very slow and causes pauses in the streamed content.
This article dives into the best solutions to fix constant buffering when streaming content on Spotify.
1. Disable Data Saver Mode
A primary reason for buffering is an unstable network or a poor internet connection. This would undoubtedly negatively impact your listening experience.
If Spotify uses more data than is available on your network, it can cause buffering to slow to an infuriatingly low pace.
The good news is that Spotify allows users to determine their data usage preferences. The app has an in-built Data Saver Mode, limiting the data quantity used.
Here’s how to switch off low data mode:
- Launch ‘Spotify’
- Navigate to the Gear icon on the right-hand corner of the screen.
- Find ‘Data Saver’ on the list.
- Move the slider alongside ‘Audio Quality’ to the OFF position.
This will ensure that low data mode is disabled.
2. Switch Off Low Power Mode
All mobile devices come with a low-power mode function that decreases background activity to save battery life.
In many instances, low power mode turns off the background refresh setting for apps, turns off automatic mail retrieval, and pauses downloads.
Unfortunately, this setting sometimes affects streaming on Spotify. When this happens, I have had success in switching off low-power mode.
Here’s how to disable low-power mode:
- Drag down from the top-right and click the ‘Battery’ icon.
- Click on ‘Settings’ then, ‘Battery’
- Navigate to ‘Low Power Mode’ and toggle it OFF.
- Click the ‘Settings’ icon and then choose ‘Battery saver’
- Ensure the slider is adjusted so that it is in the OFF position.
If you find that Spotify keeps buffering while you are streaming content, disabling the low-power mode might help.
Also, make sure your battery has been charged enough.
3. Log Out of All Devices Besides the Ones in Use
Being signed into too many devices can slow the app down and can make the app buffer more.
To fix this, you must sign out of all devices and just log into one or two.
Here’s how you can sign out of all devices:
- Access the Spotify Web Player and navigate to the ‘Account Overview Page’
- Scroll down and select ‘Sign Out Everywhere’
- Sign into the device that you are currently using.
This should help to speed things up.
4. Restart the Device
This is an often overlooked yet effective way of solving many technical issues.
Restart your phone or navigate to your PC’s start button and click ‘Restart’.
This usually works because it deletes any troublesome stored data from the temporary memory.
Keep the device off for 10–15 seconds before turning it back on and accessing Spotify.
5. Check Your Wi-Fi Connection
It is possible that your Wi-Fi connection could be poor and this could be the result of many different factors.
You can try the following to improve your Wi-Fi connection:
- Conduct an internet speed test to see that the internet is performing as it should. Just search “internet speed test” on your preferred search engine.
- Ensure that your device is near the router.
- You can also check if too many people are using the internet at the same time because this will slow it down.
- Restart the router.
- Sync to an alternate hot spot.
- Use cellular data instead of WiFi.
If you still have no luck, contact your internet service provider.
Your area’s internet may be down, or there could be a network-wide issue that is being worked on.
6. Clear the Cache
The cache is a collection of data files stored by Spotify on your device to enhance the general app loading duration and user experience.
Spotify stores cache on iOS and Android devices.
At times, Spotify may collect a corrupt file and this could cause playback issues.
Here’s how to clear the cache:
- Click ‘Home’ in the options found at the bottom of the screen.
- Select ‘Settings’ in the top right corner.
- Scroll to ‘Storage’ and choose ‘Clear Cache’
- A pop-up will appear, click ‘Clear Cache’ once more.
- Launch Spotify.
- Go to ‘Settings ‘
- Scroll to ‘Storage’ and hit ‘Delete Cache’
Remember, once the app’s cache is cleared, you will need to log in again.
You will also have to resync your offline music, and set your preferred settings.
7. Delete and Reinstall Spotify
As a last resort, you might have to delete and reinstall the app.
- If you are using your PC, you will need to uninstall the program via the ‘Control Panel’ (on Windows) or ‘System Preferences’ (on Mac).
- On your phone, you will need to press on the app and click ‘Uninstall’. You can then reinstall the app through the Google Play Store or on Apple’s App Store.
If this still doesn’t solve the buffering issue you might need to perform a clean install.
Here’s how to run a clean reinstall on your devices:
- Go to ‘Settings’ then ‘Apps’
- Locate ‘Spotify’ from your list of apps and choose it.
- Select ‘Storage’
- Then hit ‘Clear Storage’
- Then press on Spotify and click ‘Uninstall’
- Open ‘My files’ and go to ‘Internal Storage’, then ‘Android’, and lastly ‘Data’
- If there is a folder called com.spotify.music delete it.
- Repeat this if using an SD card. Go to ‘SD Card’ then ‘Android’ followed by ‘Data’, if the folder mentioned above is there, delete it.
- Restart the device.
- Launch ‘Google Play Store’ and reinstall Spotify.
- Access Spotify.
- Go to Settings, hit ‘Storage’ followed by ‘Delete Cache’
- Go to the device’s ‘Settings’ and select ‘General’
- Hit ‘iPhone Storage’
- Navigate to Spotify.
- Choose ‘Offload the app’ and then confirm.
- Select ‘Delete App’ then confirm.
- After the app is deleted, hold down the Side/Top button plus the volume button and the power off slider will appear.
- Toggle OFF to switch off the device.
- Wait a few minutes.
- Hold down the Top (or Side) button once more.
- Switch the device on and reinstall Spotify from the App Store.
- Exit ‘Spotify’
- Launch ‘Finder’ and ‘Go’
- Choose ‘Library’
- Access ‘Caches’ and clear the com.spotify.Client and com.spotify.client.helper folders.
- Go back.
- Access ‘Application Support’ and delete the folder called ‘Spotify’
- Click ‘Command’+’Shift’+’G’ and the ‘Go to Folder’ window will appear.
- Type in ~/Library/ to launch the ‘Library’ folder.
- Type “Spotify” in the search bar and then “Search: Library” and wipe out all files that come up.
- Shut down the PC.
- Wait some time and then switch the PC back ON.
- Download and reinstall the app.
- Go to ‘Spotify’ and choose ‘File’ from the menu bar. Click ‘Exit’
- Launch the ‘Start button’
- Choose ‘Settings’
- Access ‘System’
- Go to ‘Apps & features’, then choose Spotify.
- Select ‘Uninstall’. Click Uninstall once more to confirm.
- Type %AppData% in the search bar and press ‘Enter’. When AppData\Roaming appears, delete any Spotify folder that comes up.
- Delete any Spotify folder in AppData\Local (or C:\Users\*USERNAME*\AppData\Local\Spotify\Storage) too.
- Shut down your PC.
- Wait a while and then switch it back ON again.
- Download and reinstall Spotify.
Please also read our article about headphones not working Windows 10.
Most buffering takes place without us even knowing. But, when buffering actually interrupts our streaming, it becomes a problem.
If you are experiencing this, go through the troubleshooting tips above.