Sharp increase in internet use in Latvia

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Like in many other European countries, internet usage has increased during the Covid-19 crisis, with students studying and parents working from home. People watch more films and TV series. Despite data usage going up 25% for one telecoms provider, Latvia's internet infrastructure still shows resilience, reported Latvian Radio April 1.

Bite Latvija representative Una Ahuna said that internet usage has increased about 25% for their clients. Use patterns have changed as well. "Before, there was a great increase [in internet use] in the evening, but now data consumption increases right after people get up in the morning," she said.

Internet use further increases by some 10% in the evening, she said.

Meanwhile Uldis Tatarčuks, Technology Director at Tet, said that data consumption has doubled in their company, but this hasn't caused any problems.

"The daily data consumption has practically doubled as everyone works and studies from home. The maximum data consumption has increased 10%, and it doesn't cause us any stress. We have enough reserves to ensure much more access," said Tatarčuks.

Tatarčuks said that people are watching more films and series, especially local ones. Residents are also buying up computers, evidently preparing to spend a lot of time indoors. 

Streaming services such as Netflix and YouTube have decreased video quality in Europe to prevent network overdrive. 

Data by Latvia's Central Statistics Office suggest that internet access is growing every year in Latvia. 99% of companies and 85.4% of households had internet access at home, according to 2019 data.

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