Disney+ throttles quality in Europe as streaming numbers increase

Brittany A. Roston - Mar 22, 2020, 9:45am CDT
Disney+ throttles quality in Europe as streaming numbers increase

Following Netflix and Amazon before it, Disney has made the decision to throttle the streaming quality on its Disney Plus platform in Europe. The decision was made in light of the large number of people who are currently quarantined in the EU, leading to the increased usage of local Internet services for everything from gaming to video streaming, work, and school.

READ: Prime Video gets quality cap to ease coronavirus-loaded networks

Last week, the European Commission called on streaming companies like Netflix to reduce the quality of their streams during hours of peak Internet usage. The reason is fairly obvious: many people have been ordered to stay home as much as possible, including working from home and doing school from home in all cases when this is possible.

The large number of people who are now staying home, however, has put a bit of strain on Internet infrastructure — and quite a bit of that is coming from movie streaming. One recommended solution was for these streaming services to switch from high-definition to standard-definition streaming during peak usage hours.

Both Netflix and YouTube soon followed the recommendation and began throttling stream quality in Europe to help deal with the increased load. Amazon’s Prime Video joined on March 20 and now a day later on March 21, Disney is also getting on board by throttling the stream quality of its Disney Plus platform in Europe.

The movie comes ahead of Disney Plus’s widespread rollout in European markets starting on March 24. In a statement, the company said that it will lower its bandwidth usage by at least 25-percent in European markets and that it will continue to work with service providers in the EU to make other changes if necessary in the coming weeks.


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