Can our Internet services cope with streaming TV? 96



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I  am sitting at my parent’s house trying to use the Internet.   It is so slow through the household’s ADSL connection that we are all shaking our heads.

The whole suburb appears to have “fallen over”.  Could this be a welcome notice from Netflix that Australia simply doesn’t have the right type of technology in place to cope with streaming television?   It is just five days since Netflix arrived on our shores and the blame game has already started.  Iinet is blaming Telstra, Netflix is blaming Telstra, meanwhile, if Telstra provides high quality support for Netflix’s requirements their own investment in Foxtel appears to be at stake.  A strange and compelling set of circumstances in emerging media and infrastructure ownership isn’t it.

Already, Internet Service Providers like Iinet are saying that 15% of their traffic is coming from Netflix use.  Iinet has been promoting that Netflix users can enjoy quota free use of the television services.

In a recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald, global video quality analytics expert from Conviva has commented about the ability of Australia’s networks to cope with the demand for streaming.

Simon Jones, their head of marketing said the internet in Australia is “chaotic” and “unbalanced”.

“Australia has plenty of bandwidth, although there has been a lot made in the last couple of weeks of how its dropped down … that ‘oh my goodness New Zealand is running faster than Australia’,” Mr Jones said.

“But the average bandwidth available is 6.6 Mpbs,” he said to the Fairfax press.

“The reality is you can throw a pretty decent HD (high definition) stream down at about 4 or 5 Mpbs. But because the internet is fundamentally kind of chaotic – there are lots of different players, the stuff bounces around – where you get into trouble is just blindly sending stuff out across the wire, not understanding the state of network.”

He said it is up to the subscription on demand TV companies to work with ISPs to meet local requirements where services are struggling to deliver.  Sounds to me like there is a lot of pain ahead to manage the needs of the consumers who will no doubt have high expectations.

Previous research in subscription TV in the USA shows that people will tolerate a delay of up to about 4 minutes, and after that they lose patience, switching off.  Not surprising really considering TV is an immediate satisfaction leisure activity.

Let’s talk about Internet connections today.  Have you signed up for a subscription TV on demand package in the recent weeks?  Are you finding it is working for you? 

Do you think Australia’s Internet setup can cope?  Has your internet connect become sluggish this week?


Rebecca Wilson

Rebecca Wilson is the founder and publisher of Starts at Sixty. The daughter of two baby boomers, she has built the online community for over 60s by listening carefully to the issues and seeking out answers, insights and information for over 60s throughout Australia. Rebecca is an experienced marketer, a trained journalist and has a degree in politics. A mother of 3, she passionately facilitates and leads our over 60s community, bringing the community opinions, needs and interests to the fore and making Starts at Sixty a fun place to be.

  1. ADSL will only get worse as the Telcos are not maintaining the network, their stance is why waste money maintaining something that is being replaced by the NBN.

  2. I want to get Netflix but I have read so many bad reports of people having problems because our internet is so slow..I am leaving it for a bit.. no point in paying if it doesn’t work. I have unlimted ADSL2 s that is not a is a shame they tampered with the NBN..I am sure that would be been good enough so we could access it without problems

    2 REPLY
    • Well libny enough people voted tony abbot and co in and thus the intetference with the NBN to save money becausr of yhe DISASTROUS BLACK HOLE IN THE ECOMOMY causrf by yhe Lsbor party.of courde no mention that hockey hsd tripled that black hole since becomimg treasurer…
      .just one more price to pay for having a liberal government who couldnt run a country chook raffle.

  3. I have the ‘luxury’ of getting broadband by costly mobile connection – as my phone line wont support ADSL.. I did have dial-up internet previously . Telstra have fun each month throttling me down to about 25kbps someone is ghosting my computer., and using up my measly 8GB monthly allowance. !

  4. We should all have the NBN as was originally intended by Labor. Where I live we will never have the NBN. Not fair at all.

    7 REPLY
    • There were cheapskates in governments 150 years ago.. Rail gauge in Vic is 5ft 3ins. NSW downgraded slightly to 4ft 8 1/2 in but Qld, WA and Tas have to slum it with 3ft 6in. S.A. has 3 different gauges.This has presented an extremely difficult problem for rail transport on the Australian continent for over a hundred and fifty years.

    • Well why don’t you pay for a connection if you want it so much. I don’t want to pay for your connection. I have WiFi and I am very happy with it, very fast.

    • They are not laying the fibre to the node in our area at all, not even in the future, otherwise I would definitely pay for it. Fibre to the home would have been the better option though, which was what was proposed by the Labor government. Abbott wants us all to live in the dark ages compared to other countries.

    • Joe expects you to pay for something that doesn’t exist. It almost existed and we were excited….but then LNP got involved,,, are no longer worthy …say no more.

    • I have ADSL 2+ like most people and it’s unlimited, however it does get slow at times and the streaming gets a bit choppy.

  5. Waiting til they sort out their stuff. Which i’m sure they will. It is at least driving down Foxtel price! I’m wondering if it’s a way of losing free to air tv

  6. Depends on the time of day. 4am to 6am is fine. I have had a lousy phone line since 1976. I was so looking forward to Broadband but since it’s now Fraudband to the hub and I have a lousy phone line to the house, Fraudband won’t make any difference whatever. I live walking distance from the CBD which has a snappy internet.. In any case, Fraudband hasn’t made it to our suburb and there was no projected time for it last time I looked.

  7. We are lucky as we have cable internet and wont have to change to NBN which, to me, is a win win situation.

  8. yes it has been slow but that seems to be the norm. I won’t be using Netflx nor Foxtel as I wouldn’t get the use for the money.

  9. NO…. !!! Least not at the moment… and if the pollies keep messing it up (NBN) it’ll be a long time before internet speeds get to a reasonable rate for everybody… I have to hire my hired streaming videos in SD because of the lousy connection I’ve got in a northern suburb of Melbourne…. It takes me 8 hours to download a 2 minute video to Facebook…..!!!!!

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