Netflix Celebrates a Decade of Open Connect

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LOS GATOS, Calif.—In a new blog post, Netflix is celebrating Open Connect, an initiative to improve streaming quality that it launched in 2012. 

As streaming was beginning to place hefty demands on networks around the world, Netflix knew “we knew we had to invest in our own global content delivery network,” noted Gina Haspilaire, vice president, open connect partnerships and planning content delivery at Netflix in a blog post

As part of the program, Netflix works with local ISPs to place servers closer to customers so the programing is delivered with minimal lag times and in the highest possible quality. 

“We build and install servers close to where our members are, so Netflix’s shows and films are streamed from nearby, not from halfway around the world,” she explained. “To date we have 18,000 servers in 6,000 locations (and growing) across 175 countries. This reduces the load on networks, reducing traffic and costs for operators all around the world, which allows us to smoothly deliver fan favorites like `Red Notice' and `Bridgerton' seamlessly to members.”

Overtime Netflix estimates that “in 2021 alone, the program helped ISPs to avoid $1.25 billion in spend, allowing the growing demand from consumers to be handled sustainably without having to build out additional network infrastructure over time.”

In addition Netflix has invested heavily in improved video technology, which means that Netflix now delivers content at "half the bitrate of five years ago, lessening the load on all our networks," she explained. 

“As we look to the next decade of Open Connect innovation, we want to thank our partners and look forward to an even closer collaboration to entertain people everywhere,” she noted. “Netflix continues to invest in must-watch, fan-favorite series and films, and we hope to see network improvements that meets consumer demands and that the internet remains open and free without tolls on content usage online — so that people can continue to enjoy great stories from around the world.”

George Winslow

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.