Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Akamai has announced it’s going to start slowing down video game downloads during peak times.
As millions of people shelter in place and work from home, networks are being tested like never before. Internet providers, social media platforms and wireless companies alike are having to make adjustments to ensure their infrastructure can keep up with demand.
Akamai, as the world’s largest content delivery network, is working with major video game distributors, such as Microsoft and Sony. Since a single video game download can be the equivalent of 30,000 web pages worth of traffic, game downloads during peak times can have a crippling effect. As a result, Akamai will begin throttling game downloads during peak times, resuming normal speeds late at night when traffic is less.
“Playing video games enables people all over the world to connect with friends and family and enjoy much needed entertainment during these uncertain times. Our goal is to partner with other leaders in the industry to help ensure gamers are able to enjoy engaging experiences,” said Jim Ryan, President and CEO, Sony Interactive Entertainment.
“As people look to gaming for play and social connection, we’re seeing record engagement across Xbox Game Pass, Xbox Live, and Mixer. We’re actively monitoring usage and making temporary adjustments as needed to ensure the smoothest possible experience for our gamers. We appreciate the collaboration with partners like Akamai to deliver the joy of games in these unprecedented times,” said Dave McCarthy, Corporate Vice President, Xbox Product Services.
While gamers may not be happy with Akamai’s announcement, it’s understandable given the challenge the pandemic is posing for internet companies around the world. Akamai’s main goal is to make sure critical network infrastructure remains fully functional and performs at the necessary level.
“It’s important to note that Akamai fully expects to maintain the integrity and reliability of website and mobile application delivery, as well as security services, for all of our customers during this time,” writes CEO Tom Leighton. “In particular, Akamai customers across sectors such as government, healthcare, financial services, commerce, manufacturing, and business services should not experience any change in the performance of their services.”