Blaming NBN Congestion On Video Games Is A Total Crock

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NBN Co's Three Million Dollar man, CEO Bill Morrow says the reason there's network congestion on the NBN is because people are using the internet. He specifically mentioned gamers among other superusers and said NBN Co is looking at curbing network access for popular games by throttling or limiting traffic in order to fix the problem. Which is a bit like rationing water in a crowd of thirsty people so the folks wanting a little water with their scotch don't have to wait too long.

Morrow's comments were made at a parliamentary hearing in Sydney. It's worth noting that NBN Co has published a clarification on the comments, noting that the ABC report from last week was misleading as the comments were specifically about fixed wireless services and that gamers were an example of "super users".

As the traffic flow for games is pretty high and constant, he said it could be shaped in order to ensure gamers don't impact other people - you know, all those people our government insisted don't actually need fast connections.

All of this is very interesting, especially given that NBN Co conducted and published its own research into how much data many popular games use. The report found that popular online games typically use between 100MB and a gigabyte of data per hour, while "streaming 4K video can use as much as 7 gigabytes (GB) per hour".

The "real data hog" for gaming, according to NBN Co's own information, is software installation and updates - not streaming use. In contrast, NBN Co said of multi-player games "When playing with or against other players, the number can jump to around 40MB/h or higher".

So, it seems that if gamers are in Morrow's sights today, we can expect him to come after streaming video users next.

The thing Morrow and the other folks pulling NBN Co's strings don't seem to understand is that there are a lot of people who are thirsting for faster connections and access to more traffic. As people turn away from traditional media sources and depend more on services like online gaming, video-on-demand, and streaming music for their entertainment, the amount of bandwidth we want will only increase.

The scenario we're seeing being played out by Morrow is not just about bandwidth management. It could easily be seen as the first shot in a culture war. Gamers and the gaming development world have long been looked down upon by the government. Once again, we're seeing this group of people singled out and attacked.

Perhaps if the network built by NBN Co was made for everyone and not just folks checking their email twice a day and reading the news, we might not have to put up with this sort of crap from one of the highest paid bureaucrats in the country.


Comments

    We don't always agree with each other Anthony, but we do here. This sort of crap is what has befouled the rollout of the NBN since it started, particularly when the current Government got in and probably before that. The whole thing has been a political football that no one knows what to do with.

    Morrowind.

    Well said! It's such a f-ing joke, that it's sad. You have to wonder, how the NBN-Guy was able to get such a high paying job! Mr. T. has his FTTP and doesn't give a flying f*** about the rest of the country. You would think that his previous job would have given him the necessary informations to make smarter decisions, but he looks like the rest only after himself.

    Well they NEED to blame someone. That's how the world works these days. Once you've blamed someone, it's no longer your problem...

    So, it seems that if gamers are in Morrow's sights today, we can expect him to come after streaming video users next.

    Hahaha, good fucking luck. Those are VOTERS, right there! You can't piss them off! Mums and Dads watch Netflix! Only kids who can't vote play games. (Ignore research about the average gamer age being over 30.)

    So we put up with this crap because this sad old CEO is too busy wallowing in his wealth and hasn't got a clue what to do next,so just blame the first thing that pops up.Time to get someone with some guts who'll fix it because blaming someone else won't just make it go away.

    I was under the impression that it was the wireless broadband that they are shoving down peoples throats that wasn't coping and not the NBN network in general.
    It's us gamers who want the higher speeds. Morrow you're a clown. It's an infrastructure issue not the end user. Fix the problem instead of pointing the finger at your clients (us) and crying "It's not my fault. It's the mean old user breaking it... WAHHH"
    Wireless broadband was always going to buckle and fail to deliver. Everyone new it. You tosser

    The load a gamer adds to NBN congestion is miniscule compared to what Microsoft does with their huge updates. Any network engineer with one of a myriad of tools available will be able to quantify that. The worst culprit after Microsoft updates is 4K video of course, but that would still be a very far second in the list.

    Windows 10 updates slowed my low res Standard Defination streaming from Netflix so much that I reinstalled Windows 7, and now our smartphones no longer pop up with "DNS not found" errors too. Yes (to all to skeptics out there) I'm not on any of the lower quality NBN solutions, I'm on the top tier Fibre To The Premise connection.

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