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Following in the footsteps of Netflix, YouTube is reducing the quality of its videos in Europe to reduce the strain on broadband networks caused by an upsurge in home usage following the coronavirus outbreak, Reuters reports.
"We are making a commitment to temporarily switch all traffic in the EU to standard definition by default," the company said in a statement.
youtube-logo.jpg

Standard definition videos are more pixellated and not as sharp as high definition videos, but require less data transmission as a result.

The decision follows news on Thursday that Netflix will comply with a request from the European Union to lower its streaming video quality in Europe to ease network strain from the millions of people working from home. Netflix said it would reduce the bitrate of its streams for 30 days.

Internet traffic has increased with more adults switching to remote working to comply with social distancing measures. With schools closing in many countries, working adults also face the prospect of having to compete for bandwidth with children playing games and watching videos or logging in to e-learning sessions. The launch of Disney+ in Europe next Tuesday, which will offer 4K-resolution content, is unlikely to help matters.

U.K. internet service provider BT told BBC News that its broadband infrastructure has plenty of "headroom" to cope with increased demand as more people stay home due to coronavirus. The company said that since Tuesday, daytime traffic on its network had increased by between 35-60 percent, daytime and evening usage was still much lower than the highest levels it had ever recorded. "The additional load... is well within manageable limits and we have plenty of headroom for it to grow still further," said a BT spokesperson.

Vodafone and TalkTalk, which also provide mobile and broadband services to UK households, gave similar assurances to the BBC despite also seeing increases in web traffic. However, on Tuesday, all U.K. mobile networks suffered severe outages after the number of voice calls rose by 30 per cent and overloaded the system, leaving hundreds of thousands of customers unable to connect calls to people on other mobile networks.

Like Netflix, YouTube has not said whether the bitrate reduction will be implemented in other countries like the United States, but it does not appear that U.S. internet providers have called for such measures at this time.

Article Link: YouTube to Follow Netflix's Lead and Reduce Stream Quality in Europe to Ease Strain on Broadband Networks
 

timber

macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2006
634
853
Lisbon
Great. Can't go out, can't meet with friends, TV is basically showing Corona 24/7, and now the internet streaming is **** as well. :mad:
On other news just saw that Spanish doctors following Italians were being asked to treat people according to "social worth" and "life expectancy" instead of "first come first served".

I can live with regular YouTube.
 
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PickUrPoison

macrumors G3
Sep 12, 2017
8,131
10,720
Sunnyvale, CA
Do you mean the kind of people who want empirical and verifiable proof there’s actually a problem and not just virtue signaling? That sort of people?
Go to Italy, you will easily find your empirical and verifiable proof.

Stop spreading misinformation, your immorality signaling will kill people.

163B8233-2E55-4106-B1D1-FD64D8CA0FD5.png


 
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ruka.snow

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2017
1,034
2,853
Scotland
It’s not going to make a huge difference to anyone. As long as they don’t think this is a money saving experiment that they can keep using once the issue has passed.
 
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dz5b609

macrumors 6502
Mar 22, 2019
258
574
Good move, no doubt some will cry about it but we know what sort of people they are.

It really isn't, every provider thus far in almost all of the EU countries have come out and said they have plenty of headroom left and there's no real problems.

This is really just some EU-idiot who said something, that just was completely unnecessary, but I guess the EU gets a little tense seeing how irrelevant they are during this crisis, so the start pretending solving problems.
 
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Taraba

macrumors newbie
Jun 16, 2017
9
10
Do you mean the kind of people who want empirical and verifiable proof there’s actually a problem and not just virtue signaling? That sort of people?

You mean people that can’t connect red dotts witout someone giving them step by step explanation.
Many countries in Europe switching over to real-time online education not enough reason for you?
Do you need proof that there is a limit to capacity?
Netflix-quality more important than sustaining education in crisis like this?
Headroom that we had in Europe few days ago is not there any more.
 
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chris4565

macrumors 6502a
Sep 22, 2018
779
352
I'm in Germany and (at least now) I can still watch YT content in 4k. Also because YT is saying "by default" that perhaps means that it will be SD by default but you can still get HD (or even higher) if you select it.
 
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norbiu

macrumors member
Aug 23, 2007
62
67
It really isn't, every provider thus far in almost all of the EU countries have come out and said they have plenty of headroom left and there's no real problems.

This is really just some EU-idiot who said something, that just was completely unnecessary, but I guess the EU gets a little tense seeing how irrelevant they are during this crisis, so the start pretending solving problems.

Sources?
 
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globalist

macrumors 6502a
Aug 19, 2009
748
264
Go to Italy, you will easily find your empirical and verifiable proof.

Stop spreading misinformation, your immorality signaling will kill people.

View attachment 900078


Dude was asking about proof that the internet is at its limits, not proof that Italy's healthcare is.
 
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Y014951

macrumors newbie
Oct 3, 2019
14
36
Deutsch-Wagram
Go to Italy, you will easily find your empirical and verifiable proof.

Stop spreading misinformation, your immorality signaling will kill people.

View attachment 900078

I don't mean to pick sides here but I believe IPPlanMan meant that there is no proof that there is a problem with the available bandwith of internet connections in Europe...
 
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Janichsan

macrumors 68020
Oct 23, 2006
2,231
5,335
Do you mean the kind of people who want empirical and verifiable proof there’s actually a problem and not just virtue signaling? That sort of people?
Does this look enough like a serious problem for you?

On other news just saw that Spanish doctors following Italians were being asked to treat people according to "social worth" and "life expectancy" instead of "first come first served".

I can live with regular YouTube.
Yeah, I guess you are right. This is rather a perceived problem than a real one.
 
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ChrisMoBro

macrumors 6502a
Oct 31, 2016
628
2,520
The resolution of the content probably won't change, but the overall quality of the image will be reduced. You might see more MPEG-like artefacts, less contrast. Initially for 30 days so I'm sure you'll live.
That would require Netflix to encode all their content again. Makes much more sense to just stop UHD streaming
 
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incoherent_1

macrumors 6502a
Oct 19, 2016
651
1,056
Will we be getting a refund on the difference we pay for the UHD?

Back in the day before their streaming was bulletproof, Netflix refunded after outages — eg down for 30 minutes you get a $2 refund for your troubles. I’d be shocked if they didn’t do something similar here
 
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I7guy

macrumors Penryn
Nov 30, 2013
25,663
13,789
Gotta be in it to win it
This is.. Really dumb. Most people spreading the cv19 to their original country have been returning holiday goers.

And yes, reduce the video quality (default). Who gives a crap about video quality if everyone is working from home and need the bandwidth for more important things. This is a good idea.
A great idea. Maybe they should reduce the electricity also to prevent brown-outs. /s
 
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