An AMS-IX Story
September 11, 2017
Next episode playing in 10, 9, 8 seconds… My iPhone lights up: 01:42 Tuesday, it tells me. Next episode playing in 6, 5, 4… A quick calculation: tomorrow wake-up at 06:50, I can get 5 hours of sleep, one episode of 40 minutes… 2, 1... This is really the last one, 4 hours of sleep is enough…
If this scenario doesn’t sound familiar, you still might know someone who does this. Watching Netflix series episode after episode deep into the night is a social phenomenon called “binge-watching”. It can be described as watching between 2 to 6 episodes of the same TV show in one go. This behaviour is not new but took a rise when Netflix was launched in the Netherlands in 2013. The official numbers of Netflix are unknown but some* guestimate that 1 households out of 4 (2.3 million subscriptions) in the Netherlands make use of the popular video-streaming service (*Source: Volkskrant, April 8, 2017).
Binge-watching is one of the many drivers behind the ever-increasing IP traffic growth. To provide the optimal user/viewing/binge-watch experience, there are many technical solutions that Netflix uses, including design, style, and personalisation of the app. They keep it as simple as possible to operate, whilst seamlessly integrating Chromecast and Apple TV casting abilities. Another trend is that Netflix is putting their content closer and closer to the end-user, connecting at Internet Exchanges or directly with ISP’s to limit the distances and keep their traffic local. All for that small millisecond of less buffering time, to offer the viewer the ultimate binge-watching experience.
Netflix is a media services provider, based in Los Gatos, California. Founded in 1997, the company's primary business is its subscription-based streaming media service, which offers online streaming of a library of films and television programs including those produced in-house.
Netflix is currently connected to AMS-IX Amsterdam (two 100GE active physical ports at Equinix AM5) and AMS-IX Hong Kong (one 10GE virtual link via Megaport).