QCOSTARICA – Ever wonder why your surfing on the Internet slows down, to even a crawl, mainly in the evenings? This is due to peaks in Internet consumption in homes and companies, which usually occurs after 5 pm. and until midnight.
The Superintendency of Telecommunications (Sutel) confirmed this trend by analyzing the quality between various providers.
When more Internet is used in homes and businesses, “it is likely that some users will experience a decrease in speed in this period; mainly in the downloading of data,” indicated the Sutel press office.
The situation was recorded throughout 2020 and also this year, with an average increase of 40% in data traffic on fixed networks.
Undoubtedly, it is an effect of the covid-19 pandemic that forced segments of the population to use the Internet more from their homes for educational, work, information, and entertainment purposes.
Also, the Punto de Intercambio de Tráfico (IXP) – Traffic Exchange Point – reveals the same.
This platform allows local Internet providers to exchange their data traffic at an exchange point in Costa Rica, instead of using servers abroad. This possibility improves the performance.
This IXP was created in 2014 and is in charge of the Board of Directors of NIC Costa Rica, an organization for the registration of “.cr” domains and part of the National Academy of Sciences.
Before the pandemic, in all of 2019, there was a volume of between 6 and 8 Gigabytes (Gbps) of data traffic by the IXP. In 2020, this grew to between 5 and 30 Gbps (currently 40 Gbps), reveal statistics from the organization.
“The total volume increased six times compared to 2019,” said Gustavo Morales Jiménez, director of NIC Costa Rica.
During weekends (especially at night), there are traffic peaks between 6 pm and 11 pm, approximately, due to massive use patterns of the service on platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Netflix, and others.
Internet providers with fixed links are obliged to deliver to their customers at least 80% of the contracted speed, according to the Sutel Service Provision and Quality Regulations.
In 2019, before the pandemic, compliance with the download speed for Cabletica was 97.2%, when Sutel considered an average performance in its services with speeds of five Megabits per second (Mbps) and 15 Mbps.
Similarly, Kölbi – a brand of the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) – obtained an average performance of 85.3% in its 1 Mbps and 2 Mbps packages. In the case of Telecable and Tigo operators, both were evaluated with a single speed each one for which they obtained performances of 83.7% (10 Mbps) and 100% (6 Mbps), respectively.