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Home / Tech / Covid-19: After OTT streaming, gaming download speeds to be throttled to help ease network congestion

Covid-19: After OTT streaming, gaming download speeds to be throttled to help ease network congestion

Brace yourself for slower download speeds for games as service providers explore ways to ease traffic congestion.

tech Updated: Mar 25, 2020 12:06 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Sony, which makes the PlayStation gaming consoles, said it is throttling the speed at which users can download games
Sony, which makes the PlayStation gaming consoles, said it is throttling the speed at which users can download games(Pixabay)

Network congestion has become a big pain point for the service providers as millions of people are staying indoors due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Already, top OTT players have reduced streaming quality to reduce the burden. Now, service providers are throttling gaming which usually require relatively higher bandwidth.

Sony, which makes the PlayStation gaming consoles, said it is throttling the speed at which users can download games. The speed throttle has been enforced in Europe, one of the worst affected regions by the coronavirus pandemic. The company, however, assured the online gaming experience will not be affected.

“We believe it is important to do our part to address internet stability concerns as an unprecedented number of people are practicing social distancing and are becoming more reliant on internet access, said Sony in a blog post.

“Players may experience somewhat slower or delayed game downloads but will still enjoy robust gameplay. We appreciate the support and understanding from our community, and their doing their part, as we take these measures in an effort to preserve access for everyone,” it added.

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Content delivery network Akamai has also announced slowing down video game downloads to help reduce burden on the telecommunication infrastructure.

“In regions where demand is creating bottlenecks for customers, we will be reducing gaming software downloads at peak times, completing the downloads at the normal fast speeds late at night,” said Akamai CEO Tom Leighton.

Leighton noted that the move will not affect the experience of online gaming.

“Akamai is also working with leading distributors of software, particularly for the gaming industry, including Microsoft and Sony, to help manage congestion during peak usage periods. This is very important for gaming software downloads which account for large amounts of internet traffic when an update is released -- a software update for a modern game generates an amount of traffic roughly equal to 30,000 web pages,” said Akamani in a post.