EU asks Netflix to lower its quality as people isolate from coronavirus

The EU has asked Netflix to lower its video quality as more people use the service to bring some joy during their coronavirus lockdowns.

Netflix typically accounts for around 13 percent of global internet traffic and has required an increasing amount of bandwidth as the streaming giant releases an increasing library of 4K and HDR content.

Over concerns that an expected surge in Netflix traffic may cause networks to grind to a halt during a time they’re needed most, the EU...

Tech groups petition US court to reconsider net neutrality ruling

Groups representing major tech firms have asked a US court to reconsider an October ruling which largely upheld the 2017 repealing of net neutrality rules.

The subject of net neutrality consistently made the headlines during 2017 and 2018 – we know, we wrote many of them – but it's become a less hot topic this year.

Part of the reason for the decline in debate is that the FCC ruled against net neutrality in December 2017 and repealed the Obama-era rules...

Lebanon backtracks on plan to tax voice calls made over the internet

Lebanon has decided to backtrack on a policy that would have resulted in a daily charge to users wanting to make voice calls over the internet.

The plan was to charge 20 cents per day for calls made over the web; including using services like WhatsApp and FaceTime Audio.

While it's a relatively small daily charge, Lebanon expected it to result in an extra $200 million per year for the cash-strapped government.

Lebanon recently declared an "economic...

WhatsApp: ‘Advanced cyber actor’ installed spyware

OTT messaging giant WhatsApp has confirmed an ‘advanced cyber actor’ exploited a major vulnerability to install spyware on users’ devices.

With over 1.5 billion active users, WhatsApp is the world’s most popular messaging app. This popularity makes WhatsApp a key target for both independent and state-sponsored hackers.

The attackers compromised devices by making fake calls to victims’ devices. Users did not even have to pick up the call for the...

SK Broadband is having to double its capacity for Netflix

South Korean fixed broadband operator SK Broadband has said it’s having to double its network capacity to cope with Netflix demand.

In order to cope, the operator will boost its data transfer speed for high-speed networks to 100 Gbps from 50 Gbps. The operator plans to address complaints about Netflix streaming quality by doubling the size of its overseas network.

South Korea is renowned for its fast broadband speeds. Last year, SK Broadband rolled out 2.3 Gbps internet...

How blockchain is revolutionising telecom business support systems

Sponsored The business support system (BSS) remains the lifeblood of any communications provider. You can spend all you want on the network, but if you want to get that fast speed to a customer and make it useable, you cannot neglect the back office.

If you have an ageing BSS, your very survival could be at stake. These warnings have been concerning telecom operators for some time. Take a report from PwC...

Trump’s administration sues California over its net neutrality bill

The state of California is being sued following its decision to side with the majority of internet users and protect net neutrality.

Consumers are strongly in favour of net neutrality. In research conducted by Maryland University, 83 percent opposed repealing the rules – including 75 percent of Republicans, 89 percent of Democrats, and 86 percent of independents.

The state of California acted to protect its citizens’ interests with a bill to restore the net...

Skype’s classic interface avoids executioner’s block for now as Microsoft extends support

Skype’s classic interface has gotten a reprieve. Microsoft confirmed it would be extending support for Skype 7, or Skype Classic, “for some time” after feedback from users.

The original shutdown date for the current iteration of Skype was set at September 1, with Skype 8 originally being launched to Windows desktop last October.

Customers had expressed disappointment at new features, including the ‘all-in-one’ chat functionality based more on the...

Enabling the benefits of network virtualisation through smart data

During the past decade, the telecoms landscape has changed dramatically. The emergence of OTT players has eroded service providers’ voice and messaging revenues, with reports suggesting that the widespread adoption of OTT messaging and VoIP services will drive losses of $386 billion for the telecoms industry between 2012-2018.

At the same time competitive mobile operators have moved to unlimited data plans, leaving larger operators with no alternative but to change and also...

Ofcom: Streaming app subscribers overtake broadcast TV

According to a report from UK telecoms regulator Ofcom, the number of streaming app subscribers has overtaken broadcast TV for the first time.

Services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and NOW TV are becoming ever more attractive due to their growing libraries, exclusive content, on-demand access, and little-to-no adverts.

Indeed, the report notes access to original and exclusive content is the primary reason for signing up for on-demand services. An increasing number of respondents...