Study: Streaming Video Is Now More Than Half Of All Prime-Time Internet Traffic

If you’re in the United States, and you use the internet of an evening after work, then chances are you like your Netflix. In fact, chances are you like your Netflix a lot. And millions of other Americans seem to agree with you, because Netflix is taking up a huge amount of all prime-time internet traffic in the country.

That’s in the latest report (PDF) from internet analytics company Sandvine, which has been tracking trends in national and international data use for several years.

Netflix by itself, the research finds, accounts for about 36.5% of all downstream internet traffic at that time of day. YouTube comes in second place, at about 15.5% of downstream prime-time traffic. That means, between those two services alone, streaming video accounts for over half of all prime-time internet traffic.

Amazon Video and Hulu do both also barely make the top-ten list, way down in the 1.9% – 2% range. Add all four together and you’re looking at about 56% of all downstream internet traffic being video entertainment.

Looking back over Sandvine’s reports over the past few years shows how quickly Netflix’s streaming presence has grown. In 2010, Netflix cracked the 20% mark of internet traffic, but on average viewers were streaming less than an hour of content per day.

Now, Netflix has over 41 million members in the U.S. who each stream an average of over 90 minutes per day of TV and movies. Small wonder that adds up to so much bandwidth.

We may not all turn on the big screen and channel surf between 8 and 11 p.m. anymore, but old habits die hard. Like our parents and grandparents before us, we’re all still spending prime time watching TV… we just have a new way to do it.

Global Internet Phenomena Report [Sandvine]

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