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July 11, 2014

Verizon: streaming slowdowns are all Netflix’s fault

But the companies are working together to improve the quality of video streaming.

By Amy-Jo Crowley

Verizon Communications is working with Netflix to improve the quality of video streaming for users after it blamed the on-demand video company for what it calls low-quality video streams.

In a blog post, the Internet service provider argued that it was Netflix’s mismanagement of its video streaming traffic that had led to slower speeds for users.

Verizon’s VP of regulatory affairs, David Young, wrote: "Netflix chose to attempt to deliver that traffic to Verizon through a few third-party transit providers with limited capacity over connections specifically to be used only for balanced traffic flows. Netflix knew better.

"Netflix is responsible for either using connections that can carry the volume of traffic it is sending, or working out arrangements with its suppliers so they can handle the volumes."

Verizon also posted a diagram illustrating where it thinks Netflix traffic was being slowed in the Los Angeles area. It said that slowdowns occurred outside of Verizon’s networks, while no other service or application is experiencing the sort of slowdowns Netflix is experiencing.

Netflix said in a statement that congestion at interconnection points is controlled by Internet service providers like Verizon, and reiterated its call for "strong net neutrality" rules to govern such links.

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Meanwhile, Young added that the two tech companies are collaborating to establish new, direct pipelines to improve the quality of video streaming for customers.

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