Since the COVID-19 virus became a pandemic, people have been self-isolating at home in order to curb the spread of the virus. This has caused an increase in demand for streaming especially on Netflix which has in tune lead to a strain on internet service providers.
BBC reports Netflix will be lowering the picture quality when streaming which will cut down data consumption by 25% on its platform. The change will not be evident as users will still be able to stream movies in HD or ultra-high definition 4K resolution.
This restriction will only happen to those in Europe and the UK.
European Commissioner for Internal Market, Thierry Breton had. Earlier suggested people should “switch to standard definition when HD [high-definition] is not necessary“. Netflix made the decision after having a phone call. With European officials.
“Following the discussions between Commissioner Thierry Breton and [Netflix chief executive] Reed Hastings, and given the extraordinary challenges raised by the coronavirus, Netflix has decided to begin reducing bitrates across all our streams in Europe for 30 days,” the company said.
YouTube became the second company to respond to the call from European officials as well. Videos will be switched to standard definition by default and this will happen initially for 30 days in the UK and Europe.
On YouTube complying with the directive, Thierry Breton said in a statement, “I warmly welcome the initiative that Google has taken to preserve the smooth functioning of the internet during the COVID19 crisis”.
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