Netflix has agreed to compensate Comcast, the biggest cable operator and internet provider in the United States, to ensure that its content is delivered to clients at lightning fast speeds. Details of the financial terms remain under wraps.
“The companies have established a more direct connection between Netflix and Comcast, similar to other networks, that’s already delivering an even better user experience to consumers, while also allowing for future growth in Netflix traffic,” read their joint statement.
As one of the most popular video streaming websites in the world, Netflix knows that its subscribers use up a lot of internet traffic. In fact, 32 per cent of North America’s downstream traffic during the evenings is attributed to the site, said network technology firm Sandvine.
As such, Netflix has been collaborating with ISPs via a program known as Open Connect, whereby it establishes its own servers within networks owned by an internet service provider
In Open Connect, ISPs can also link directly to Netflix’s content placed in data centres across the country instead of receiving it from third-party distributors who have existing agreements with the video streaming site.
Just like other popular sites, Netflix has engaged third-party distributors to store and transmit content on its behalf. However, Verizon and Comcast are among the bigger ISPs that have not taken part in the Open Connect program.
While the agreement between Netflix and Comcast is not called an Open Connect deal, it will utilise similar technology, allowing Comcast to skirt third-party distributors and link directly to Netflix’s own servers.