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Study: Netflix Hogs Up 32.7% of Internet Bandwidth

By - Source: Mashable | B 48 comments

And yet they still do not offer pornography

Remember earlier this year when AT&T basically flicked their customers in the face by announcing strict data caps for no good reason? And remember how it followed that up by announcing the intention to throttle the hell out of their customers? Good times, good times. Both announcements were widely seen as proof of their intention to kill Netflix. Little did they know Netflix had every intention of doing the job themselves. We kid, we kid. We bring all this up because, while we cannot support AT&T's bandwidth grab, when it comes to its claims that services like Netflix gobble up tons of it, we have to admit they have a point. A recent study conducted by Sandvine Intelligent Broadband Networks has determined that Netflix streaming video services account for a whopping 32.7 percent of all Internet bandwidth. That's all, as in 'everywhere in the world'.

The study examined 80 different countries and found not only that Netflix, but entertainment apps in general rule the web. Real-time entertainment apps, like the games you play with your friends on Facebook, make up about 60 percent of peak traffic, an increase over the already-huge 50 percent share such apps enjoyed last year. Other interesting findings include confirmation that "the heaviest 1 percent of upstream users account for almost 43 percent of total upstream usage". One question the study explicitly asks is "Have we seen peak Netflix"? The answer appears to be maybe, as Netflix usage is predicted to decline somewhat going into Q1 2012 thanks to increased competition and their loss of membership thanks to recent blunders such as the now-cancelled Qwikster service.

For the curious, in the United States, the four largest Internet services ranked by daily download volume are Netflix, with 27.6 percent, HTTP with 17.8 percent, YouTube at 10 percent and BitTorrent pulling up the rear with 9 percent. Interestingly, BitTorrent's relatively low ranking, though still huge, is strong indication that critics of the heavy-handed response to digital downloading from the film and music industries have been right all along. People will generally choose the legal option, provided it's convenient. Whether that sinks in for the litigious music industry remains to be seen. In the meantime, we'll content ourselves with gasping in shock that some official aspect of the actual pornographic industry didn't make the top four.

You can read the whole study for yourself here.

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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    legacy7955 , October 28, 2011 7:05 PM
    Considering the crappy quality of most Hollyweird movies these days I have a hard time believing that people want to actually pay anything to see them.
Other Comments
  • 3 Hide
    halls , October 28, 2011 6:12 PM
    Love the subtitle. I wonder if they would actually consider streaming it?
  • 3 Hide
    nebun , October 28, 2011 6:19 PM
    good for them....now it's time to improve this so called internet
  • Display all 48 comments.
  • 4 Hide
    icepick314 , October 28, 2011 6:26 PM
    nebungood for them....now it's time to improve this so called internet


    starting with ISP and bandwidth limit...

    then governments' attempt at blocking traffic with Protect IP law...

    lastly get rid of MAFIAA's extortion scheme...
  • 0 Hide
    Kamab , October 28, 2011 6:28 PM
    I feel like I just read a study that a majority of all internet traffic is porn.
  • 1 Hide
    arson94 , October 28, 2011 6:31 PM
    I bet 10% of all netflix traffic comes to my computer. I can definitely say I get my money's worth, ever after the price hikes.
  • 0 Hide
    Parrdacc , October 28, 2011 6:33 PM
    A clear sign that the U.S. needs to start re-thinking its whole bandwidth limits. We seem to have always limited the overall bandwidth for all sorts of various reasons causing us to lag behind.
  • 6 Hide
    bin1127 , October 28, 2011 6:35 PM
    Internet providers can only complain about bandwidth use if they are losing money. If they are making billions each year, shouldn't they be constantly upgrading their network instead?
  • 5 Hide
    thrasher32 , October 28, 2011 6:38 PM
    We don't need less traffic, we need more bandwidth. Duh.
  • 6 Hide
    Anonymous , October 28, 2011 6:39 PM
    I'm not shocked about porn not making the top 4. Most people probably only spend a few minutes on a porn site, while people watch episode after episode of television shows on netflix.
  • 1 Hide
    nurgletheunclean , October 28, 2011 6:43 PM
    Glad NNTP didn't make that list.
  • -5 Hide
    alidan , October 28, 2011 6:45 PM
    if this artical is interested, i download all the porn i want, to the extent that i have an ample archive, and never need to get more again, doesn't mean i wont, but means i don't have to.

    most people only need 1gb, i need 300gb
  • 1 Hide
    saskuatch , October 28, 2011 6:52 PM
    you americans are lucky, come to Canada and then complain about bandwidth limits :p 
  • 2 Hide
    gm0n3y , October 28, 2011 6:55 PM
    My internet usage is still probably 90%+ bittorrent. I'd say 7% online gaming and 3% HTTP.
  • 4 Hide
    altikal , October 28, 2011 6:58 PM
    alidan...Less time downloading porn. More time getting a girlfriend springs to mind.
  • 0 Hide
    crewton , October 28, 2011 7:01 PM
    After reading the upstream comment about their 1%, it makes an interesting analogy to America's other 1% >.>
  • 10 Hide
    legacy7955 , October 28, 2011 7:05 PM
    Considering the crappy quality of most Hollyweird movies these days I have a hard time believing that people want to actually pay anything to see them.
  • 1 Hide
    ickarumba1 , October 28, 2011 7:21 PM
    I'm surprised that torrenting doesn't take up a lot of bandwidth.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , October 28, 2011 7:25 PM
    hallsLove the subtitle. I wonder if they would actually consider streaming it?


    Actually, some foreign films on netflix do show full penetration.

    Anyway, netflix doesn't hog anything, its just there. It's subscribers hog up the 32%.
  • 0 Hide
    inthere , October 28, 2011 7:44 PM
    Funny the real time entertainment apps had no mention of WOW, I bet that and just online gaming period take a huge chunk
  • 0 Hide
    spentshells , October 28, 2011 7:56 PM
    ickarumba1I'm surprised that torrenting doesn't take up a lot of bandwidth.


    In canada they throttle that type of file transfer
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