As the coronavirus wreaks havoc on the market, some of Wall Street’s biggest names have taken up arms in the fight in any way they can, including Netflix
Here at MyWallSt, we will always bring you the most important news from the world of finance, but as the coronavirus continues to smash the stock market, with the S&P 500 (NYSEARCA: VOO) likely to open down once more, we also need to bring you the good news.
As many of us continue to self-isolate, and our pale, vitamin D deprived bodies wither away in solitude, the one constant we can look forward to is that our Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) and Amazon Prime (NASDAQ: AMZN) accounts can provide us with some respite.
However, if you find that the quality of such streaming services has suddenly lessened overnight, fear not, as it is not the end of days. These streaming services are simply doing their part in the fight against coronavirus.
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Why is Netflix doing this?
Despite the rising threat of competitors in the form of Disney (NYSE: DIS) and Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), Netflix announced this weekend that it would be reducing its streaming quality across Europe for a 30-day period. Collectively, streaming platforms account for a major chunk of global Internet traffic, amounting to 60% in 2019 alone.
Even with the ongoing streaming wars, Netflix and its competition (including Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) subsidiary YouTube) are lessening the quality of their services to help internet providers deal with the increase of at-home traffic as people self-isolate. It is a pleasure to see one of the most hotly contested industries in the world set aside its own plans for sector dominance and join in the good fight against the coronavirus in any way they can.
A spokesperson for Netflix had this to say:
“We estimate that this will reduce Netflix traffic on European networks by around 25% while also ensuring a good quality service for our members.”
It is also nice to know that even at reduced quality of service, we can still expect Netflix et al. to run at some capacity. If it was to go down completely, then I shudder to think of the consequences. Will I have to actually interact with my family? Will I have to do something productive with my isolated life?
It’s not just about streaming
It is not all about streaming services though, and despite its 30% drop in the past month alone, social media giant Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) has also downgraded its video quality across both its Facebook and Instagram platforms.
Not only that, but Facebook, alongside SaaS company Salesforce (NYSE: CRM), has also agreed to donate their emergency wildfire stash of facemasks to medical personnel. Apple has also agreed to donate ‘millions of masks’, according to CEO Tim Cook, while Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is doing his part in having his factories produce ventilators for hospitals. He has stated that 1,200 should be shipped out this week, with more on the way.
It is important to focus on this type of news as it can be all too easy to become bogged down in the doom and gloom of everyday life under lockdown. It is a reassuring thought to think that some of the largest companies in the world, which we generally associate with secrecy and privacy breaches, can come together in times of turmoil, and make the world a slightly better place.
MyWallSt operates a full disclosure policy. MyWallSt staff currently holds long positions in companies mentioned above. Read our full disclosure policy here.