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Netflix Eats Up 15% of All Internet Downstream Traffic Worldwide (Study)

Amazon Prime consumes more bandwidth than YouTube in Americas region: Sandvine report

Netflix remains the 800-pound gorilla of the streaming world: Video from the service consumes a significant 15% of all internet bandwidth globally, the most of any single application.

That’s according to the latest Global Internet Phenomena Report from Sandvine, a vendor of bandwidth-management systems. Netflix was followed by HTTP media streams, representing 13.1% of all downstream traffic; YouTube (11.4%); web browsing (7.8%); and MPEG transport streams (4.4%).

In the Americas, Netflix grabs an even bigger slice of the bandwidth pie, accounting for 19.1% of total downstream traffic. Here’s an interesting wrinkle: In this Americas, Amazon Prime Video consumes more data (7.7% of downstream traffic) than YouTube (7.5%), per Sandvine.

During peak evening hours, Netflix usage can spike as high as 40% of all downstream traffic on some wireline operator networks in the Americas, per the study, which remains consistent with past studies Sandvine has conducted.

Netflix’s dominant share of internet bandwidth usage is even more impressive considering that its video encoding is more efficient than any other major internet video provider, according to Sandvine. In other words, Netflix would represent an even larger portion of internet-data consumption if its compression algorithms were less efficient.

Worldwide, video is 57.7% of the total volume of downstream traffic on the internet, followed by web (17.0%), gaming (7.8%) and social media (5.1%). Other categories include content marketplaces like iTunes and Google Play (4.6%), file sharing (2.8%), and audio streaming (1.0%), according to the Sandvine report.

Looking at video as a category, Netflix represents of 26.6% downstream video traffic worldwide. Regionally, Netflix gobbles up 30.7% in the Americas. In EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), YouTube takes top share of downstream video traffic (30.4%) followed by Netflix (23.1%), while in the Asia-Pacific region web-based video streaming is No. 1 (29.2%) followed by Facebook video (17.7%).

The data Sandvine uses to compile its Global Internet Phenomena Report comes from more than 150 service-provider customers globally, representing 2.1 billion subscribers. The Canadian company, based in Waterloo, Ontario, noted that the report doesn’t include significant data from China or India.

Global Video Streaming Traffic Share

Netflix 26.6%
HTTP media stream 24.4%
YouTube 21.3%
Raw MPEG transport stream 8.0%
Amazon Prime Video 5.7%
Twitch 3.5%
Facebook video 3.4%
Openload 0.8%
Sky Go 0.5%
Hulu 0.4%

Source: Sandvine Global Internet Phenomena Report, October 2018

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