YouTube, Netflix and the NBC Sports app are the content streamers throttled the most in the U.S.

YouTube, Netflix and the NBC Sports app are the content streamers throttled the most in the U.S.
There are some consumers out there who don't understand why there is such a fuss made about net neutrality. These are the Obama-era rules that prevented carriers and ISPs from picking out specific streams of content for special treatment. For example, without net neutrality, carriers/ISPs could get paid to carry some of this content over special "fast lanes," and could decide to throttle or ban other content at their discretion. In June, the Trump-era FDA, led by chairman Ajit Pai, repealed the net neutrality rules.

According to a new report from Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, even before the end of net neutrality, carriers have been throttling internet speeds to and from popular mobile video streaming apps like YouTube and Netflix. This data was obtained by researchers by using an app called Wehe, which monitors the streaming services that are the subject of "differentiation." The latter term is used to describe when a wireless carrier treats a particular content stream differently from other streams. Most of the time, this means that the stream in question is being throttled. Approximately 100,000 smartphone users have the app installed on their handsets.

The data reveals that from January through early May, Verizon had a leading 11,000 cases of "differentiation," followed by AT&T (8,398 times), T-Mobile (3,900) and Sprint (339). C Spire, the nation's sixth largest carrier (and the largest privately owned one), had the fewest cases of "differentiation" during the same time period. The streamers most apt to having their content throttled are YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and the NBC Sports app.

According to the Wehe app, during one test, Netflix speeds on T-Mobile were 1.77Mbps compared to the 6.62Mbps speed that other T-Mobile network traffic was running at during the same time. Some of the throttling is noted in advance by the wireless operators' Terms of Service agreements. After all, many unlimited plans cap data speed on streaming video, and it says so in the fine print. In addition, unlimited plan users who go over their carriers' monthly data cap could find their data throttled during periods of network congestion.

But experts say that the throttling has picked up since the FCC voted to end net neutrality in December 2017. Meanwhile, California is on the verge of passing a bill that will make net neutrality a law in the state. Other states are in the process of doing the same thing.

source: Bloomberg

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6 Comments

1. Tech-shake

Posts: 213; Member since: Nov 14, 2016

"we dont need net neutrality"

2. thedizzle

Posts: 197; Member since: Oct 05, 2017

"You'll take your throttled content and like it"

3. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3151; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

If it was good for Americans and Obama introduced it, you know The Orange Limpdick rolled it back.

4. L0n3n1nja

Posts: 1578; Member since: Jul 12, 2016

About a decade ago comcast crippled my upload speed to the point Xbox Live didn't even connect when the Xbox was the only device on the network. Then their tech support tried to tell me my Xbox wasn't powerful enough to handle Halo and I needed to upgrade the Xbox. Like a year later I saw in the news they had a lawsuit against them, apparently they didn't approve of torrent apps and crippled anyone caught using one whether for legit or illegal file sharing. So yeah, I support Net Neutrality.

5. jsjammu

Posts: 169; Member since: Nov 13, 2014

ISP's definitely throttle streaming services. I recently got Spectrum 400 Mbps service and I get really fast speeds except for when I'm streaming. I'm hoping recently passed California law would fix that, if they want to do business in California.

7. TheOracle1

Posts: 2340; Member since: May 04, 2015

Just put a decent vpn on your home router or device. I use one permanently on all my devices using the Strongswan client which has virtually no effect on battery life unlike most other setups.

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