sWBgf”>“Verizon made an enemy”: FiOS customer mad that Netflix works better on VPN
“Verizon made an enemy”: FiOS customer mad that Netflix works better on VPN
by Jon Brodkin, arstechnica.com
July 18 09:28 AM
“Verizon made an enemy tonight” is the title of a new blog post by a FiOS customer who just discovered that using a VPN can vastly improve his Netflix performance.
Colin Nederkoorn, co-founder and CEO of e-mail software maker Customer.io, ran a Netflix test video and found that it “streams at 375 kbps (or 0.375 mbps – 0.5% of the speed I pay for) at the fastest. I was shocked.”
Nederkoorn pays Verizon for 75Mbps download speed. How could he make the most of it?
“My hypothesis here was that by connecting to a VPN, my traffic might end up getting routed through uncongested tubes,” he wrote. “Basically, if Verizon is not upgrading the tubes that go to Netflix, maybe I can connect to a different location (via VPN) first where Verizon will have good performance and there will be no congestion between location 2 and Netflix.”
As you can see in the video, Nederkoorn connected to VyprVPN and got a 3Mbps stream, which is what Netflix recommends for standard definition video. This is “about 10x the speed I was getting connecting directly via Verizon,” he wrote. The video also started up faster on the VPN than it did without.
“It seems absurd to me that adding another hop via a VPN actually improves streaming speed,” he wrote. “Clearly it’s not Netflix that doesn’t have the capacity. It seems that Verizon are deliberately dragging their feet and failing to provide service that people have paid for. Verizon, tonight you made an enemy, and doing my own tests have proven (at least to me) that you’re in the wrong here.”
As it happens, we wrote a feature in February that explains why using a VPN can speed up Netflix traffic on ISPs like Comcast and Verizon, which were haggling with Netflix over money. Netflix agreed to pay both Comcast and Verizon for direct links to their networks, and performance on Comcast improved substantially. Unfortunately, Verizon says it will take until the end of this year to set up all the necessary links to Netflix, so Nederkoorn will have to keep using that VPN for a while longer.