The European Union has asked Netflix to slow streaming speeds in order to reduce network bandwidth now that millions of people have committed to staying home to flatten the infection curve of COVID-19 in what could be a prelude to a similar move in the United States.
James Hibberd for Entertainment Weekly:
European Commissioner Thierry Breton tweeted Wednesday night that he spoke with Netflix CEO Reed Hastings about lowering the service’s streaming speeds. It’s part of an effort to encourage people and companies to switch back to standard definition, instead of high definition (let alone ultra-crisp 4K), when it’s not necessary in order to keep the pipelines flowing to all. The request raises the possibility of streaming content reverting to 20th century-level picture quality during the crisis in some areas.
Netflix currently uses “adaptive streaming” which automatically adjusts picture quality based on a network’s capacity. The company has also distributed hubs of its content on servers worldwide so shows can be delivered locally and quickly rather than all steaming from one central source. In other words, Netflix has already taken steps to not be a bandwidth hog, though because of those steps we could see streaming quality reduced in some areas during the crisis regardless of whether the U.S. asks streamers like Netflix to scale back.
Important phone conversation with @ReedHastings, CEO of @Netflix
To beat #COVID19, we #StayAtHome
Teleworking & streaming help a lot but infrastructures might be in strain.
To secure Internet access for all, let’s #SwitchToStandard definition when HD is not necessary.
— Thierry Breton (@ThierryBreton) March 18, 2020
MacDailyNews Take: Alright, that’s enough. We can put up with just about anything – except standard definition! Oh, the humanity!!!
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]
I though the EU internet was much better than ours (US), now they are whining its not enough? Which is it..
They are not whining, they made a friendly request to cap bit-rate, (in the EU) to ensure that everybody (in the EU) has access during peak lockdown and self-isolation. Can’t read – won’t read?
Moron, your the one who can’t comprehend english… EU has been promoted as having better internet than the US in various places, and now, when the rubber meets the road, they can’t handle it. I call that irony
…speaks for itself. You’ve never been to Europe, is that right?
It’s you’re not your. And you did that twice. And it’s English not english. And periods go at the end of sentences. Now, I call that irony. And you are still totally off topic and obviously still can’t read. Please try reading again, or ask an adult with an education to help you.
No residential internet networks were sized for people videoconferencing from home + entertainment distribution.
Good news: BluRay still works great. Best audio, best video available to consumers. Netflix should do its part to get us through this.
Actually……that depends on how the area is balanced.
Most neighborhoods don’t need much bandwidth during the day while most business centers do.
What DOCSIS 3.1 and newer (I believe) can do is balance a given amount of bandwidth by shifting in the evening as usage goes down in one area and rises in another.
With many business areas using less DATA, and if an area’s customers have fairly new modems, then the system can shift as needed.
Obviously business areas with smaller node counts can still handle more overall DATA but as usage shifts keep in mind this was set up to handle Netflix and gamers at home. Also I doubt that every home or even a majority will be doing videoconferencing, DATA uploads along with streaming and gaming at the same time.
Again this will be a good test and learning experience for ISPs.
THE EU IS AN ABSOLUTE FAILURE !
FAILURE IN IMMIGRATION PRESSURES
FAILURE IN ECONOMIC GROWTH PRESSURE
FAILURE TO CONTROL & HELP EACH OTHER WITH NEW HEALTH THREATS – JUST ABANDONED ITALY ALL TOGETHER.
THE EU SHOULD JUST CLOSE SHOP .
Does your real name sound like Ronald Dump? Sounds like something he would say.
Of course, because all unions are bad. Including the UNITED States? Get a grip. nuff said.
I have news for you…the EU has just closed shop? Can’t you see that? You largely contradict yourself in such a small statement, the EU has put borders back and I have more news for you…it’s dog eat dog, not just in the EU, or any other country but in our own town, in your local supermarket. Please refrain from using full on caps, this is the most unhinged thing I have ever read during the covid outbreak. If you are Italian then I am understand, if you are not – please get help, because if you can’t cope with reading tech news today – then god help you when you read the world news tomorrow.
Where do you live, Euro Man?
Special conditions to slow the pandemic spread has zero bearing on the EU as a well functioning republican (small r) market system. If you haven’t noticed, The US president is belatedly taking extreme measures on the other side of the Atlantic.
Perhaps you could help us all out by telling us what your European internet speed is.
Or are you the same troll who took the opportunity to badmouth all things Europe because MDN supports that kind of thing on its supposed Mac news site?
Let’s return to the topic, shall we?
My friends in France use Orange for their internet service. On the website there, one of the offers on the homepage is 50 GB/sec speeds for 38 euro/month. https://boutique.orange.fr/internet-mobile/pack-open-fibre/open-up-50go Are speeds and prices significantly better in the USA? Where?
Correction — looks like the 38 euro/month intro offer is a bundle that includes mobile.
Orange fiber optic actually starts at 22 euro./month for 400 GB/sec download speeds.
I doubt that many Americans enjoy that level of performance from their internet service providers, but please post your local price/speed if you want to be helpful.
I’m on a megabundle, so my data rate and prices are both through the roof.
I think you mean Mbit. Nobody has anywhere near 400 GBbit. Anywhere.
The max is around 2 Gbit which is 250 MBytes /s. Most ISP speeds are in Mbits, or Gbits in some cases. That’s with a small “b” …. Mbits.
Euro man lives in Idahohoho
Wua? Can you please read the (off-topic) comment I replied to and show me at anytime where I argued for or against internet speeds? Are you under the impression that the average or typical devices owned by your French friends (for example) have the radios in them (or have optic fibre ports) them make use of the speeds you claim?
Again please read the comment I replied to again, and if you can claim, show or prove anywhere that your comment had any reference at all to mine, then you have my word that I will donate my entire AAPL portfolio to the global pandemic. And if not then I would ask you to do the same.
Put your money where your mouth? The bets on.
The world isn’t ending, you still make it to Idaho…
THE USA IS AN ABSOLUTE FAILURE !
FAILURE IN IMMIGRATION PRESSURES
FAILURE IN ECONOMIC GROWTH PRESSURE
FAILURE TO CONTROL & HELP EACH OTHER WITH NEW HEALTH THREATS – JUST ABANDONED MISSISSIPPI ALL TOGETHER.
THE USA SHOULD JUST CLOSE SHOP
Regarding MDN Take: hahahahah LOL ROTF
And I don’t want to own my music and movies on local storage for what again?
Typical. We don’t want SD! I’d rather just not watch at all SD looks like absolute garbage on my 4K TV. Glad I’m not in Europe.
I heard that they actually lowered the bitrate by 25%. You can still stream in 4K but the quality might not be so high.