Apple TV+ Streaming Quality Lowered in Europe to Reduce Network Strain

The European Union has asked streaming services to temporarily reduce streaming quality to ease the strain on broadband networks caused by people working from home, a request that Netflix, YouTube, and now Apple TV+ have complied with.

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Netflix cut streaming data bitrates yesterday, while YouTube reduced streaming quality this morning. According to 9to5Mac, ‌Apple TV+‌ streaming quality was recently lowered as well, resulting in lower resolution streams and heavily compressed content with visibly blocky artifacts.

9to5Mac says that the lowered quality is "very noticeable," especially on larger-sized television sets, and quite a departure from the 4K HDR content that Apple normally offers. Resolutions are said to be as low as 670 pixels tall.

Compared to other services like Netflix that have also lowered quality to save data, Apple's streaming quality is described as "particularly aggressive" and akin to the kind of quality one might expect from "streaming on a phone over a 3G network."

At the current time, streaming content providers have only been asked to lower streaming quality in Europe, so the lower streaming rates do not affect the United States and other countries. The United States has not called on streaming content providers to implement data reduction measures.

It's not clear how long Apple plans to stream with reduced quality and whether tweaks will be made for a better compromise between quality and data usage. Netflix has said that it will continue using the lower quality stream for the next 30 days.

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Top Rated Comments

Akiainavas Avatar
56 months ago
“Complete idiotic that politicians meddle in this. Let the ISPs do the asking, let them deal with the legitimate streaming providers and get a proxy/caching server on their networks if they still don't have that.
Moreover it's utterly pointless.Legitimate streaming is much, much more friendly on the ISPs than torrent downloads are that easily peak traffic many times higher than streaming. [peaks hurt, and a 2160o blu-ray copy over a torrent download easily saturates the highest consumer bandwidths]

Politicians should stay out of technology they have no grasp of whatsoever.”



Politicians rarely have grasp, perhaps. But neither do you mate. On both technology and politics.

Nobody is meddling. The commission ( by the way, not politicians, educate yourself, most commissioners are actually technical experts in their respective fields. That’s why commission is appointed and not elected anf that’s why they can only make recommendations, not laws ) made a recommendation. Netflix, YouTube and Apple followed it.

Nobody forced anyone to do anything.

People like you are the problem. They preempt the issue - you criticize. They don’t preempt and let the network collapse - you criticize.

It’s a shame the only thing you never do is offer actual, workable solutions - or have any perspective - we are in the middle of a global pandemic, hundreds of thousands of people may die, even more may lose jobs and you’re b...ng about slightly lower quality of a streaming service ?

We need the bandwidth for medicine, for people to work and be productive - nobody cares about your binging.

Get some perspective mate.
Score: 51 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Domen151 Avatar
56 months ago
I honestly doubt that Apple TV+ put that much strain on EU networks with its few shows they have available right now ?‍♂️

But its good that they did it.
Score: 36 Votes (Like | Disagree)
cycomiko Avatar
56 months ago

Complete idiotic that politicians meddle in this. Let the ISPs do the asking, let them deal with the legitimate streaming providers and get a proxy/caching server on their networks if they still don't have that.
Moreover it's utterly pointless.Legitimate streaming is much, much more friendly on the ISPs than torrent downloads are that easily peak traffic many times higher than streaming. [peaks hurt, and a 2160o blu-ray copy over a torrent download easily saturates the highest consumer bandwidths]

Politicians should stay out of technology they have no grasp of whatsoever.
Wrong. Politicians will ask when its for the betterment of their communities. Thats why they are voted for and elected. You are an example of what is wrong with the world.

They are also asking ISPs to restrict non-essential bandwidth, so good luck with the torrents.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JVNPhoto Avatar
56 months ago
It’s kind of funny that people just accept this. Was there really that big of a problem to warrant Apple and other streaming services to throttle bit rate even though people pay extra for it (eg. Netflix)? Shouldn’t it be up to the ISP’s to figure this out? Is there really nothing more important for the EU commission to handle in this crisis?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nozuka Avatar
56 months ago

It’s kind of funny that people just accept this. Was there really that big of a problem to warrant Apple and other streaming services to throttle bit rate even though people pay extra for it (eg. Netflix)? Shouldn’t it be up to the ISP’s to figure this out? Is there really nothing more important for commission to handle in this crisis?
People have more to worry about, than getting a lower bit stream in this crisis.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GeoStructural Avatar
56 months ago
It is nice, but the impact would be negligible anyway. ?
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)