Telecoms networks strained as more people remain home

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Internet networks are seeing some strain during the emergency as usage is up during the coronavirus pandemic, reported Latvian Radio March 20.

According to Uldis Tatarčuks, Technology Director at the Tet telecoms operator, traffic has increased 10% as more people are staying home during the outbreak.

"We notice that while earlier usage tended to peak from 6 to 11 p.m., currently the load doesn't increase in the evening but is now more even through the day. It is evident people use more the computer and watch videos more through the day. [..] But we follow the changes in data flow and adjust accordingly," said Tatarčuks. 

Another telecoms provider has noticed an increase in the demand for phones, computers and TV sets. "Demand has increased for earphones, computers and TV sets. What's interesting, even though the season hasn't started yet, demand has grown for electric scooters so that people can avoid using public transportation," said Una Ahuna-Ozola, head of PR at the Bite telecoms company.

But Juris Binde, head of the LMT telecoms provider, voiced a note of caution. He said that LMT's networks are seeing a significant increase in data transfers. "Don't use it without due cause. Use it rationally. For example, things that take more data can be downloaded at night when the load on the system is at a minimum. When you watch a film, don't watch it on a separate computer or tablet. You can do it together, especially living in the current house regime," said Binde. 

The news comes as the Netflix streaming service has announced that it will reduce streaming quality across Europe to prevent network from being overburdened due to increased demand for services during self-isolation.

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