Facebook and Disney have decided to join Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon in reducing the quality of video streams across Europe.
With millions of people around the world being told to stay at home, the strain on data centers and communication networks grows as every day people log in to work or entertain themselves. Last week, European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, Thierry Breton, asked the streaming companies to downgrade video quality on their services in response. Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon agreed.
As Techcrunch reports, Facebook and Disney are now taking similar action. Disney+ is launching in Europe tomorrow, but will do so with video quality lower than initially planned. It seems unlikely this is going to limit the service’s appeal considering everyone will be very keen to find new sources of entertainment in the coming weeks and months.
Facebook will limit the quality of video streamed on the social network, but also on Instagram, which should result in much more bandwidth being made available for users across Europe. And to give you some idea of the impact this decision has, network intelligence company Sandvine reported that over 60 percent of downstream traffic in 2019 was from video, and over 25 percent of mobile traffic is from YouTube.