How Does Netflix Work? The Technology Behind the Platform
Netflix offers a long list of available contents for viewing, which boosted the company’s subscribers across the globe. First-time users usually think that the process of viewing videos through this platform is the same as watching media through other video streaming sites. They will begin asking how does Netflix work for its subscribers. Viewers must know the technology behind the famed TV show streaming site.
Video Hosting and Infrastructure
Netflix’s infrastructure works with Amazon EC2 technology. This technology is regarded as Amazon Web Services’ cloud computing center. Since the company started to us this technology in 2010, it utilizes another web service called Amazon S3 system for keeping master copies of the shows. Amazon S3 is also known as Simple Storage System, which is Amazon’s version of online storage. Aside from the master copies, the storage keeps copies of their encoded versions, which come in different video qualities. The online storage will transfer data to content delivery platforms and let viewers watch the shows on their end.
Data Usage Across the Cyberworld
Netflix’s popularity often brings people to inquire about its bandwidth usage. How does Netflix work in terms of transferring data across the internet? According to a report, Netflix is currently using the most amount of bandwidth online. In fact, this boost went beyond YouTube’s usage, which experienced a notable drop of around 13 percent in data transfer. The increasing number of famous television series probably triggered this data transfer for Netflix. Recent productions stirred many viewers’ curiosity across. Since these videos are unavailable in regular video streaming sites, many people decided to switch to Netflix for viewing.
Aside from the growing number of series, this peak can also be connected to the user interface offered by Netflix. Numerous users gave Netflix positive reviews and high ratings because of the premium infrastructure behind the easy-to-navigate user interface that enhances viewing experience.
Video Quality and Encoding
The development of high-end players today resulted in more people looking for high definition video streaming. Netflix offers a comprehensive list of show titles in its database. Videos are available in high definition videos, but are encoded in different resolution to let people control their bandwidth usage. Once viewers selected their needed video quality, the platform will deliver the content then continue streaming.
Users’ Bandwidth Use
How does Netflix work for users in terms of bandwidth transfers? Many people are concerned with their bandwidth usage since internet service providers allot specific bandwidth caps monthly. Streaming several gigabytes of videos will result to excessive bandwidth transfer and result to overage. Luckily, Netflix allows viewers to control their bandwidth transfers to limit their usage and decrease their bills. On their accounts, users will configure Netflix to load low quality videos, which will transfer around 0.3 GB of bandwidth for an hour of video. Users who are not worried about their bandwidth caps can select to load high definition videos at all times to enjoy the quality shows offered by the site.
Geo-blocking and Bypassing
Netflix is a dream come true for those living in the United States and countries with Netflix franchises. Nevertheless, viewers in other parts of the world will not enjoy the same advantage because of its geo-blocking feature. This is among the top questions about Netflix.
Geo-blocking is the concept of limiting a specific group of people according to their locations or IP addresses. Each country has its IP address code. For example, Netflix USA sets a geo-blocker to keep people outside the United States from accessing its content. Even if the viewer is willing to pay money for subscription, they can’t do so because their IP addresses are being blocked. The goal of this feature is to prevent piracy.
This resulted to doing some workarounds just to get through the geo-block. One workaround is using a VPN or other services that will hide their own place’s IP address. Using these services will keep geo-blockers from detecting their IP addresses. Some services allow users to use a US IP address to let them access the site. Hence, users are identified as “US residents” and will be given access. From there, they can start subscribing and access their needed content. Numerous companies offer these services for a fee, with Unblock-Us as among the popular services Netflix viewers choose.
Overall, numerous technicalities answer the questions about how does Netflix work among first time users. Understanding the limitations in terms of accessing the site as well as other workarounds like using VPN and unblockers will help users access Netflix’s premium videos listings.