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YouTube reducing stream quality in Europe

YouTube is joining Netflix in reducing the data required for streams in Europe over concerns of a lack of internet bandwidth during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement obtained by USA TODAY, parent company Google says while they’ve seen only “a few usage peaks,” YouTube has systems in place to adjust and require less network capacity.

“We are making a commitment to temporarily default all traffic in the EU to Standard Definition,” said Google in a statement. “We will continue working with member state governments and network operators to minimize stress on the system, while also delivering a good user experience.”

On Thursday, Netflix said it would reduce the data on its streams in Europe for 30 days after European Union commissioner Thierry Breton raised concerns about the health of the internet as everyone teleworks.

“I warmly 👍🏻 the initiative that #Google takes to preserve the smooth functioning of the Internet during the #COVID19 crisis,” said Breton in a tweet posted Friday.

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