Study Reveals U.S. Carriers Throttle Online Video on Their Mobile Networks Even When Not Congested

By CircleID Reporter

A new study conducted by researchers at Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts Amherst involving 650,000 tests indicates U.S. carriers are throttling online video on their mobile networks regardless of whether or not those networks are congested. While U.S. wireless carriers have long insisted that the slowing down of video traffic on their networks is to avoid congestion and bottlenecks, throttling is occurring all the time this study has found.

A large-scale study of net neutrality violations and their implications is long overdue, says the group that conducted the research. They wrote: "In the intervening decade, the Internet has evolved in two key ways that require a new approach to auditing. First, today's dominant source of Internet traffic is video streaming from content providers, not BitTorrent. Second, users increasingly access the Internet from their mobile devices, often with a spectrum-constrained cellular connection. There is a need to conduct a study of net neutrality violations that takes these changes into account. We address this need using 1,045,413 measurements conducted by 126,249 users of our Wehe app, across 2,735 ISPs in 183 countries/regions."

Related topics: Mobile Internet, Net Neutrality, Telecom, Wireless

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