World Cup game causes internet surge


World Cup game causes internet surge

Simon Quicke

Fears that World Cup games would put a strain on the network were borne out yesterday as England played its first game during office hours.

With the England v Solvenia match streamed by the BBC there were the options for office workers to watch at their desks, a development that has been a concern for network managers for the past few weeks.

To avoid quality drops some firms made the decision to prevent staff from watching streamed video or audio and enforcing internet usage policies.

Figures from Demon show that there was a 55% increase in web activity (see chart) during the game compared to a normal Wednesday afternoon and it peaked at kick-off at 3pm.

With Wimbledon matches being streamed and future events also going to be transmitted over the web in this way Demon expects the surge
in usage yesterday to be repeated in the future.

Matt Cantwell, head of Demon, said that people looked on the web as a utility that came without too many restrictions and would watch games without an expected drop in quality.

"The surge in internet traffic could cause problems for SME businesses, who are the lifeblood the UK's economy.  If they can't run their business normally during a World Cup match and ban their workers from keeping an eye on games during working hours, then inevitably, the business will lose out both on productivity and customer satisfaction," he said.

To the relief of employers England's next game, against Germany, is kicking off on Sunday afternoon.


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