Netflix, YouTube dominate US traffic

12 November 2013
WATERLOO: Half of US fixed broadband media consumption comes through one of two applications, Netflix or YouTube, according to a new report which also suggests that Facebook and YouTube are the top sources of downstream traffic on mobile networks.

These findings appear in the latest assessment of global internet traffic trends, Global Internet Phenomena Report 2H2013, by Sandvine, a provider of broadband network solutions, and are based on data from the company's 250-plus service provider customers around the world.

Netflix took a 31.62% share of downstream fixed network traffic in peak hours, followed by YouTube on 18.69%. All other applications were in single figures, including Hulu (1.29%) and Amazon (1.61%), despite, All Things Digital reported, the efforts by the latter two firms to close the gap on Netflix.

Dave Caputo, CEO of Sandvine, also noted that peer-to-peer filesharing had fallen below 10% of total traffic in North America for the first time and compared that with the situation eleven years ago when it had taken a 60% share.

"Since 2009 on-demand entertainment has consumed more bandwidth than 'experience later' applications like peer-to-peer filesharing," he explained.

When considering traffic delivered over mobile networks (and excluding that delivered to mobile devices via wifi), YouTube headed the rankings with a 17.69% share, followed by Facebook on 15.44%.

Sandvine data for the rest of the world showed that average monthly mobile usage in Asia-Pacific was more than double that in North America, driven largely by video, which accounted for 50% of peak downstream traffic.

Meanwhile, in Europe, Netflix had grown rapidly to the point where, just two years after launch, the company now took more than 20% of downstream traffic on certain fixed networks in the UK.

Video accounted for less than 6% of traffic in mobile networks in Africa, but this was expected to grow faster than in any other region before it.

"The African market is especially unique," said Caputo, "as most users are connecting to the Internet for the first time through mobile devices, and using applications like Skype, Facebook and WhatsApp."

Caputo also predicted that Africa would become the fastest video adopter "and operators will respond with creative device-and application-based service tiers".

Data sourced from Sandvine, All Things Digital; additional content by Warc staff
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