Over the last couple of months, Internet traffic has increased by about a quarter in many major cities, with traffic expanding out from city centers to the suburbs. Demand for video conferencing has skyrocketed as it has replaced face-to-face interaction with coworkers, family and friends. Home entertainment services have ramped up to handle the needs of millions finding themselves home bound and bored.
How’s the Internet doing through all of this? There are signs of fatigue:, websites that lag, wi-fi slowing to a crawl, videos that get choppy and freeze. But overall, it’s doing just fine, and the covid-19 crisis is driving the biggest expansion in years.
Brief local disruptions are actually signs of things working as they should. Built as a distributed network, the Internet is built to bend, but not break. Local strains get rerouted and distributed across other sites.
Since widespread social distancing rules went into effect, the peak usage time for the Internet in the United States went from 7:30 in the evening to just before lunchtime. Cloudfare, a web infrastructure and security company, guesses this shift is related to late morning spikes in virtual meetings and classrooms. Video still accounts for about half of the data traveling the Internet.
Giants of Internet traffic like Netflix and Equinix (operator of 200 data centers globally) are speeding network upgrades to meet demand. Netflix normally partners with the largest data centers in a region to stream local copies to viewer’s homes. They are now looking to deploy hundreds of new servers into the 2nd and 3rd tier regional data centers also. Equinix was in a years-long process of upgrading capacity into their data centers from 10 to 100 gigabytes. Their updated timeline is now to accomplish this in weeks.
How about your company? Has your network and IT services been able to bend and not break during this unprecedented shift in how we all work?
At Uplogix, like Zoom and Netflix, we still have the same product as before the pandemic hit, but now it’s even more useful and in demand. Network admins working remotely need to be able to manage their network infrastructure as if they were there. The need for effective monitoring and automation is critical as networks support business like never before.
For more information on how Uplogix can help support your distributed IT workforce with better remote network management, take a look at our Covid-19 Resources Page for one-stop shopping for solution videos, blog posts and demo sign-ups.