Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Netflix Researching “Large-Scale Peer-to-Peer Technology”

Today’s theme, so far, is “company x does one thing; company y stops doing that same thing”. On that theme, Spotify is going to turn off its peer-to-peer capabilities. Netflix, on the other hand, is seeking to begin using peer-to-peer streaming to help mitigate its data costs and, presumably, work around ISP-level throttling, according to Ars Technica’s Jon Brodkin:

“The foundation for settlement-free peering is you need something resembling a balance [in traffic],” [BitTorrent CEO Eric] Klinker said. “If you could make Netflix traffic look more like that, then you would have an opportunity to ride the same settlement-free economics that all the Tier 1 ISPs use to connect with each other.”

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings himself has made the same point, writing that the company has asked ISPs “if we too would qualify for no-fee interconnect if we changed our service to upload as much data as we download—thus filling their upstream networks and nearly doubling our total traffic.”