COVID-19 (aka Coronavirus) has hit the globe pretty hard and because a significant portion of the global population is now working from home or has stopped working entirely, the strain that has been put on the internet is pretty significant.
The European Union recently asked video streaming platforms to dial down on video quality in order to reduce the load being placed on the internet and Amazon, YouTube and Netflix have complied with the request.
We are making a commitment to temporarily switch all traffic in the EU to standard definition by defaultYouTube statement
The changes will be in place for the next 30 days, and Amazon made a similar announcement saying they want to “to mitigate network congestion”;
Prime Video is working with local authorities and Internet Service Providers where needed to help mitigate any network congestion, including in Europe where we’ve already begun the effort to reduce streaming bitrates whilst maintaining a quality streaming experience for our customersAmazon spokesperson
There are worries that the launch of Disney+ in the UK and other European countries this coming week might result in a strain coming from non-essential traffic.