Now it is being reported that YouTube is extending this policy they have in Europe to the globe.
Given YouTube's measure, Gizmodo reached out to Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu, to ask about whether they planned to reduce the default streaming quality to standard definition in the U.S. With much of the world in social distancing/quarantine mode, we're watching a whole lot more streaming services.
However, this only applies to cellular networks and not broadband internet, reports clarified. In a statement to media, YouTube said, we are making a commitment to temporarily switch all traffic in the European Union to standard definition by default.
In a statement, YouTube said the move is meant "to do our part to minimize stress on the system during this unprecedented situation".
The mobile-only plan (Rs.199) that Netflix introduced in India previous year is its most popular tier in the country, a source said.
The spokesperson of Amazon in his statement has said that they need to manage the telecom services carefully for ensuring that they can handle the demand increase of internet so that everyone who is now home does not have to head out.
Unlike Netflix, which reduced the bitrate of all its streams by 25 percent, YouTube will simply set all its videos to play at standard definition by default.
YouTube's benevolence only goes so far though with users still able to choose high definition quality if they want - it will not be the default though.
Netflix's rival Amazon Prime Video on Monday had said it has begun efforts to reduce streaming bit rates in India.
The move comes after the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) had urged streaming services last week to lessen their burden on internet pipelines in order to avoid congestion issues as usage surges due to more people working from home. "Given the global nature of this crisis, we will expand that change globally starting today", the spokesperson added.
Sony, Google, Facebook, Viacom18, MX Player, Hotstar, Zee, Tiktok and Netflix have also made a decision to transmit only standard definition (SD) content to reduce load on cellular networks till April 14.