Verizon denies throttling Netflix, Amazon speeds in Texas

Detailed by the Washington Post, Texas-based software engineer David Raphael published a blog post on Wednesday claiming that his Verizon FiOS connection was being throttled significantly when attempting to connect to Amazon Web Services. Specifically, Raphael did a speed test and discovered that his connection was running at 40 kBps when downloading content from Amazon Web Services. He had also noticed a significant loss in quality when attempting to stream Netflix movies, basically because Netflix Instant is powered by Amazon Web Services.

After successfully remotely testing his office’s connection at 5,000 kBps, Raphael got in touch with Verizon customer support. Speaking over an instant messenger chat window, the Verizon representative had Raphael run through a battery of tests and continued to claim that the connection was fine. After Raphael got frustrated with the situation, he started asking the representative if Verizon was throttling FiOS home connections when attempting to connect to cloud based services like Netflix. By the end of the conversation, the representative wrote that Verizon was “limiting bandwidth to cloud providers.”

Of course, the representative could have simply been attempting to end the conversation by agreeing with Raphael. After the blog post was published, Verizon representatives released a statement to the Washington Post that read “We treat all traffic equally, and that has not changed. Many factors can affect the speed of a customer’s experience for a specific site, including that site’s servers, the way the traffic is routed over the Internet and other considerations. We are looking into this specific matter, but the company representative was mistaken. We’re going to redouble our representative education efforts on this topic.”

Other speed tests that Raphael tried on Google and other sites went successfully. Only Amazon Web Services was being throttled, according to Raphael. This incident occurred shortly after D.C. Circuit court struck down a net neutrality ruling thus making it legal for Internet service providers to throttle the connection based on the visited site.

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