YouTube, Netflix reduce stream quality to ease strain on internet in Europe

Getty Images

Netflix and YouTube have announced that they would be reducing their quality of streaming in Europe to lessen the strain on the continent’s internet capabilities during the coronavirus pandemic.

The moves comes after European Union Commissioner Thierry Breton, who oversees the EU internal market, implored streaming services to switch all streams to standard definition in a Wednesday tweet. 

“To beat #COVID19, we #StayAtHome,” Breton tweeted. “Teleworking & streaming help a lot but infrastructures might be in strain. To secure Internet access for all, let’s #SwitchToStandard definition when HD is not necessary.”

YouTube said on Friday that it would be switching to standard definition in Europe for the next 30 days.

“We will continue working with member state governments and network operators to minimize stress on the system, while also delivering a good user experience,” YouTube said in a statement to Bloomberg.

Netflix released a similar statement on Thursday.

“We estimate that this will reduce Netflix traffic on European networks by 25 percent while also ensuring a good quality service for our members,” the company said.


Tags Coronavirus European Union Netflix Video streaming services YouTube

The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

See all Hill.TV See all Video

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video