The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) said on Friday, March 27, that video streaming platform Netflix will be reducing bitrates across all of its streams in the Philippines.
The move is in accordance with Netflix’s initiatives in the European Union to ease the pressure on network infrastructure as Internet users flock to the site for entertainment because of the lockdown imposed by various governments.
In a letter to the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), Netflix said the measure will reduce the overall amount of its bandwidth use by around 25%.
The US-based streaming platform assured the public that the full range of video resolutions per type of subscription will be maintained. Netflix will keep the setup in place for 30 days and will re-evaluate after the deadline.
The NTC said the move of Netflix will help free up bandwidth that could be allocated towards other vital online services until telcos and Internet service providers (ISPs) can fully adapt to the demand for streaming services.
“The DICT lauds this initiative by the private sector as it would undoubtedly assist in the government’s efforts to improve the quality of service to the people especially during the public health emergency crisis,” the agency stated.
“With this, it is hoped that other online streaming platforms, such as Facebook, Youtube, Amazon, iFlix, and others, will follow suit and adopt similar measures to help improve connectivity, alleviate potential network congestion, and reduce the strain on the network infrastructure of the country.”
The DICT earlier directed the NTC to ensure consistent and reliable telecommunication services and sufficient bandwidth allocation across government and private sectors during the Covid-19 public health emergency.