February 13, 2014
Netflix Maintains ISPs Are Not Throttling Streaming On User Accounts
Enid Burns for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online
Netflix users have some cause to complain about content they are streaming from the service. A recent court decision allowing Internet Service Providers (ISP) to throttle, or slow down, internet speeds could be a possible explanation behind the recent drop in service.
Netflix maintains that speeds have not dipped significantly and it has been business as usual for the streaming content provider.
Analysts say ISP throttling is not behind recent customer complaints, re/code reports.
J.P. Morgan analyst Doug Anmuth offered insight after speaking with Netflix.
"Netflix does not seem overly concerned regarding Net Neutrality, and continues to believe that violations would be escalated quickly. Netflix also indicated that it has no evidence or belief that its service is being throttled," Anmuth told Re/Code.
Whether providers are throttling Netflix service or not, customers are complaining, and voicing their frustration on message boards, according to a Huffington Post report.
"Some question whether slower Netflix performance is related to last month's federal court ruling that struck down the government's ban on internet traffic throttling," Huffington Post's Timothy Stenovec wrote.
Some Netflix customers have complained that the service has become "pretty much unusable" through their ISP, while others say streaming content is often interrupted so the TV show or movie can buffer, according to HuffPost.
A monthly report released by Netflix, the ISP Speed Index, shows that the average speed in the US is 1.78 Mbps. At the top of the rankings was Google Fiber, which averages 3.78 Mbps. Also in the top five were Cablevision - Optimum (2.92 Mbps); Cox (2.69 Mbps); Suddenlink (2.52 Mbps) and Charter (2.16 Mbps). All five providers held the same ranks the previous month.
In January, five ISPs exhibited an increase in average speeds. Those were Time Warner Cable (2.01 Mbps); Bright House (1.78 Mbps); Windstream (1.70 Mbps); Centurylink (1.64 Mbps) and Clearwire (0.99 Mbps). Bright House increased by five rank points to the eighth place out of 17 providers. Windstream increased its rank by two places. The remaining three increased their rank by one place each.
The ISPs that dropped in rank include Verizon Fios, which fell one place to seventh in the rankings with average speeds of 1.82 Mbps; AT&T U-Verse, which fell three slots to 12th with average speeds of 1.59 Mbps; and Mediacom, which fell five slots and registered average streaming speeds of 1.53 Mbps for Netflix customers. Verizon's DSL service fell one slot to last place of the 17 ISPs. Verizon DSL service averaged 0.97 Mbps for streaming of Netflix content.
Netflix releases monthly rankings of ISP services worldwide, detailing average speeds for each ISP in each country. The report is intended to give monthly insight into which ISP delivers the best Netflix experience. An overview of the monthly report was posted on the Netflix Blog.
For the first time, Netflix is tracking ISPs in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Colombia. In the recent report, Netflix notes that Brazil and Chile lead Latin America for providing the best streaming experience; Colombia comes in third.
"These three countries provide average speeds that are higher than in the United States, which over the past months is seeing a downward trend in average speeds," the post said.