Netflix to Pay Verizon for Peering Two Months After Comcast Deal

Verizon has signed a peering agreement with Netflix. IMAGE: FLICKR, ERIC HAUSER
Verizon has signed a peering agreement with Netflix.
IMAGE: FLICKR, ERIC HAUSER

Netflix has reached a deal to pay Verizon to connect networks, the second such agreement aimed at improving the quality of the video streaming service.

Comcast signed a similar deal in February that included Netflix paying for the privilege of connecting networks. Such arrangements, known as “peering,” improve data-intensive services like streaming video but are typically done without any money ever changing hands.

“We have reached an interconnect arrangement with Verizon that we hope will improve performance for our joint customers over the coming months,” a Netflix spokesperson toldMashable.

Netflix said that the deal is a paid peering arrangement and that customers should see improvements over the course of several months. A Verizon spokesperson also confirmed the deal but declined to discuss the terms.

Verizon customers have endured poor service as highlighted by the Netflix speed index. The reason for the slow speeds — and which company is at fault — has been the subject of heated debate.

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Since February, Netflix has waged a very public campaign about net neutrality and the danger of such deals. Peering falls outside of the realm of previous Internet regulation including “net neutrality,” which required that all Internet traffic be treated equally. Peering, since it is a direct connection, is closer to a hardware solution and does not fall under those rules.

Netflix has called for “strong net neutrality” regulation that would include peering agreements.

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Source: Mashable | JASON ABBRUZZESE

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