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Netflix reduces the quality of streaming: action to decongest the network

All video streams are reduced by 25% to avoid congestion in Europe during the coronavirus epidemic

Netflix has announced that it will reduce its streaming bitrate for the next 30 days.Reed Hastings, Netflix CEO, and European Commissioner Thierry Breton discussed the possibility of reducing the definition of streaming content in order to make the network smoother at peak times.

The overall bitrate reduction will reduce Netflix's data consumption of about 25%. A rather substantial percentage since the service, on average, uses between 1.9 GB and 2.55 GB per hour of streaming HD video.

Netflix says that some users will experience a decrease in video quality but it will not be the case for everyone. And no user should notice a significant loss of quality thanks to Netflix's optimized compression algorithms. Netflix's bitrate reduction is just one of the many necessary sacrifices that Europeans will have to make to reduce network congestion as more people work from home and put themselves in quarantine. It is clear that Netflix will go to touch the most used streams, intervening only on 4K it would be difficult to achieve the desired goal.


In recent days the network, especially in Italy, has shown its weaknesses. TIM, Vodafone but also the other operators in many areas go slow and in fits and starts. If the situation does not improve, and if distance lessons should also arrive as requested by the Ministry of Education,not to exclude that other bandwidth reductions may be made for non-essential internet services.

For now, only those who use the service in Europe will see a reduction in the quality of streaming, and this situation indicates what could happen if the coronavirus pandemic were to worsen.