According to the latest forecast, Netflix blew out streaming subscriber predictions for the first quarter of 2020, as millions of consumers around the globe hunkered down to entertain themselves at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Netflix added 15.77 million subs worldwide (including 2.31 million in the US and Canada) in the first quarter of 2020, beating original expectations of 7 million additions.
“In our 20 year history, we have never seen a future more uncertain or unsettling,” said Netlflix in a statement. “We expect viewing to decline and membership growth to decelerate as home confinement ends, which we hope is soon,” the company added.
Following data spikes on its residential broadband networks in late March, driven by millions who are working and studying from home amid the spread of COVID-19, usage has now plateaued in most of its cable markets.
According to Comcast, the company has seen a 32% increase in upstream traffic and an 18% boost in downstream traffic, holding that those totals are still within the overall capacity of the network.
But general usage trends have also shifted during the pandemic. Downstream peaks are now occurring at 9:00 PM, compared with the period of 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM prior to the pandemic. Upstream peaks, meanwhile, have moved from 9:00 PM to throughout the workday in most cities.
According to a report published by Analysys Mason, COVID-19 will lead to a significant decline in telecoms revenue. It is expected that revenue for telecoms operators will fall by 3.4 percent in 2020 compared to 2019, before returning to growth (0.8 per cent) in 2021.
Analysys Mason had previously forecast growth of 0.7 percent in 2020 and 0.8 percent in 2021. The overall impact for operators in developed economies is ‘lost’ revenue of more than $40 billion in each year.
“Consumer telecoms services, which account for the majority (68 percent) of telecoms revenue, tend to be relatively resilient during economic downturns,” said Stephen Sale, Research Director and Co-author of the report. “But large increases in unemployment, business closures and the overall decrease in economic activity will cause a sharp decline in business services revenue.”
For many operators, 5G deployments have been significantly impacted by coronavirus, which has led to significant working restrictions for staff at all levels.
For Verizon, however, the pandemic disruption has not slowed its 5G goals, and it is still on track to launch 5G in the 30 new cities it promised last month.
“We’re on track for the additional 30 this year, and we continue to expand coverage in the 30 that we launched last year,” said Heidi Hemmer, Vice President of technology at Verizon.
Due to city-wide lockdowns and general worker health precautions, many operators are seeing their 5G deployments slowed, but Verizon reports that the lack of the public on the streets has actually accelerated the deployment process in the cities where engineers are still allowed to carry out the work.
Altice Europe has announced the launch of its new wholesale fiber division, Fastfiber, which is partially owned by Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners.
Altice Europe said Fastfiber was “by far the largest Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) wholesaler” in Portugal, with more than four million homes connected at the end of last year. The newly minted Fastfiber is comprised of all of the Altice Portugal and MEO fiber assets in Portugal, including FTTH and dark fiber. The transaction between the two companies valued Fastfiber at $4.9 billion.
A Series of Fortunate Events – by Broadband Forum
Don’t let social distancing isolate you from the emerging reality of PON in 2020!
‘The Worldwide PON Market’ BASe Series Webinar is set to be held on the 14th of May 2020 at 10 AM EST and 4 PM CET.
Broadband Forum, Fiber Broadband Association, and Fiber to the Home Council Europe will be joining forces to keep you updated on the latest drivers influencing fiber today.
This is the start of BASe webinar series that will consist of four 60-90-minute sessions. The sessions will be held every two weeks starting from May 14, 2020, and continuing through to June.
Keep your eyes peeled for details on registration!
And that’s a wrap! Broadband and Axrios complete USP webinar
On April 16, the Broadband Forum Connected Home Council and Axiros hosted a webinar on how today’s providers and consumer electronics vendors are monetizing the connected home.
A hot topic of discussion was the Broadband Forum’s User Services Platform (TR-369) which has powerful new tools and an improved data model to make managing the connected home simpler than ever before. The webinar also took an in-depth technical look at the device capabilities of USP, the flexibility of the USP’s TR-181 data model, and how the TR-181 data model aids migration.
To find out more about how Broadband Forum is unleashing the connected home ecosystem, please click here to receive a recording of the webinar.
The event must go on…Broadband Forum to host virtual Q2 meeting
The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is continuing to impact the way of life for all, bringing a set of unprecedented challenges. In light of the current global situation, Broadband Forum has decided to switch its Q2 meeting, scheduled for June 16-19 in Melbourne, Australia, to a series of virtual meetings.
Broadband Forum anticipates the series of virtual meetings to run for approximately two weeks and will have both opening and closing sessions, as well as technical sessions driven by an agenda with the usual contribution deadlines.
More details will be forthcoming as Lincoln Lavoie, Broadband Forum Technical Committee Chair, has been tasked to work with the Steering Committee to further define the details of the virtual meetings. At these uncertain times, the Forum is able to take a new approach to meetings, explore new tools, and continue valuable work and cadence of that work to the best of its ability.
If you would like to attend the virtual Q2 meeting, please contact Rhonda Heier at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Knowing me, knowing you…
From 5G and the smart home to next-generation access and network automation, Broadband Forum is working on a series of initiatives to enable the next era of connectivity. If you would like to track or get involved in these projects, you can learn more about Broadband Forum’s work in progress here or visit its YouTube channel for further insight.