Netflix, YouTube Take Up Nearly Half of Home Internet Traffic


Video streaming sites take up more than half of peak downstream home internet traffic in North America, according to the latest report from Sandvine.

Netflix is still the dominant leader in traffic, taking over nearly a third (32.3 percent) of traffic during peak times, though it has dropped a fraction of a percent from last year. Other competing pay-video services like Hulu (2.41 percent), Amazon Instant Video (1.31 percent) and HBO Go (0.34 percent) still have a long ways in catching up with Netflix. In addition Amazon and HBO Go have seen their shares decline from last year.

Coming in second is YouTube, which grew significantly from last year to now take up 17.1 percent of traffic.

The Sandvine report attributes YouTube’s growth to viewing videos on mobile devices using home Wi-Fi: “While YouTube has been dabbling in offering longer form videos and streaming live events, we believe none of those have played a major impact in its rise in traffic share. Instead, we believe the increase is attributed to the continued growth of smartphone and tablet use within the home (i.e. “Home Roaming”); as observed in this study, such devices consume over a quarter of all streaming audio and video on fixed access networks.”

When it comes to peak downstream mobile traffic, YouTube is on top with 27.3 percent, a drop from 31 percent last year. Netflix’s share of mobile traffic is very low compared to its dominance in home internet traffic, but the Sandvine report states that it doubled its mobile traffic to 3.8 percent this year.

Sandvine is confident that more people will watch Netflix content on their mobile devices in the future: “We believe that that this number will increase going forward and that longer form video as a whole will become more commonplace on mobile networks in North America.”

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