The increase in Internet use has slowed down the Internet speed worldwide. According to a report, 88 of the 200 most populous American cities have experienced slower Internet connections. In a handful of cities, the drop has been as big as 40 percent.
It seems that everything that happens or changes around us is due to a single factor: the coronavirus. Authorities around the world have urged citizens to remain indoors and quarantined. What do you do when you are normally at home? You probably surf social media, watch some videos, read the news, or chat with friends.
But, when you’re trapped inside for an extended period of time, it will switch to streaming movies or shows on services like Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, and many more. At the same time, there are many people working from home because companies have closed office complexes to prevent the spread of the virus.
Ultimately, this has led to a massive increase in Internet use, taking up more data bandwidth than ever. In turn, this also leads to slower Internet speeds because too many people consume large amounts of data at any one time.
Services like Zoom, Slack and Microsoft Teams have experienced a large influx of users since work from home has become a norm in many countries due to a blockage. Similarly, there are reports of internet slowdown in many regions and telecom operators are struggling to update their local infrastructure in a very short period of time.
Netflix was one of the first to announce a reduction in video quality from high definition (HD) to standard definition (SD). The move dramatically helps reduce data consumption by 25 percent. One hour of SD video uses approximately 1GB of data, while HD can use up to 3GB per hour.
Services operating in India have unanimously decided to also reduce the quality of video delivery. This includes Netflix India, YouTube India, Prime Video, and other local operators such as Hotstar, Zee5, ALT Balaji, Voot, and MX Player. However, users do not have to worry, as the change in quality will not be significant and they will still be able to enjoy all the content smoothly.