There is no need to mention the fact that it is spreading rapidly throughout Europe coronavirus epidemics. In a moment of quarantine and restricted free movement, there is more to do at home. You can read a book, read articles on the Internet, or watch Netflix or YouTube.
It is the last option chosen by a large proportion of the population across Europe, and the streaming service now has to deal with excessive server traffic, which could even overload the European Internet infrastructure. This problem is addressed at European Commission level.
Temporary reduction of data flow
Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for International Market and Services, spoke with Netflix CEO and discussed the possibility that in this situation it would be good to reduce the quality from HD to SD. The difference in downloaded data is significant – with SD equals an hour of streaming 1 GB of data, with HD it is 3 GB. However, this tweet does not mean that the quality will decrease.
Rather, it is a request from the EU not to overload the Internet. The same restriction is imposed by YouTube, which will temporarily play videos in the default SD resolution. However, the ability to switch to higher will remain available to users.
Important phone conversation with @ReedHastings, CEO of @Netflix— Thierry Breton (@ThierryBreton) March 18, 2020
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.
Netflix, however, recently decided to reduce data flow in Europe by up to 25%. This will take at least a month. There were no words about how this would affect the image quality. If you use Netflix yourself, you can help yourself by lowering the resolution to SD, as Thierry Breton encourages.
As the infection of Covid-19 is spreading, it is possible that similar measures may spread to other countries. Netflix already receives approximately 12% of downloaded data from the global Internet network. This number is likely to increase in the coming weeks and months.