Are Today’s Smartphones Really Powerful Enough to Handle Streaming and Games?


People of a certain youthful age will only know mobile phones as being these incredible machines that can do pretty much anything.

Those of a slightly older vintage will remember when the Snake game was considered the zenith of technological advancement, and that five minutes to load a single webpage was about par for the course.

Today, smartphones are far more than just communication devices, and now we consider the tech spec of each handset to see how it will cope with streaming video, playing high-end games, and more.

But, when you compare your phone to a tablet, let’s say, or even a laptop computer, how well do they stack up when it comes to media playback?


When they release their latest generation handsets, firms like Apple and Samsung like to present their tech as game-changing, but, actually, are you better off sticking with your tablet when it comes to watching Netflix or playing games?

Super-Sharp Graphics

For older readers who spent their formative years chasing a pixelated blob around the screen with their 2D snake, the fact that you can play the likes of Call of Duty, FIFA, and Fortnite on modern handsets is mind-blowing.

That has been made possible by a number of innovations, but chief among them has been the advancement in resolution capability – it’s not uncommon to see smartphones with 1440 x 2560 pixel displays, which is extraordinary.

It still requires powerful processing to keep the frame rate up to allow for premium gaming, but it’s the resolution of a screen that ultimately acts as the gateway to an exceptional experience.

There are online games that are powered by a browser/app too, and slot games such as Rainbow Riches are an example of that. These require quality displays to cope with the moving reels and bonus features, and, while once games like that would simply not have been appropriate for sluggish mobile phones, these days the possibilities are endless for developers.

Size Does Matter

It’s worth noting too how screen size plays a part in delivering your content.

Smartphone screens have increased and decreased throughout the years as consumer demands have changed, but one of the key factors has been the ability of manufacturers to minimise the bezel that essentially frames the screen.

By doing so, they can increase display size without impacting upon functionality or adding weight to the handset, and so, with better graphics – on a wider and longer screen – the gaming and streaming experience has never been better.

Process This

If you want to watch a movie on Netflix, watch videos of skateboarding cats on YouTube, or take on your friends in the latest game, you will need a powerful processor that is up to the task.


Because, even with a quality display, you still need a processor that can power your content without lagging or reduced frame rates. This CPU essentially determines how ‘fast’ your phone feels when viewing media content.

The higher the processor size as displayed in GHz, the better it will be for streaming video and playing games, so that should be a factor in your buying decision.

The bottom line is that, if your phone has a high pixel resolution and a powerful processor that can handle your demands, there is no reason why mobile technology can’t the go-to for media consumption now and into the future.

Tech Digest Correspondent