83% 3G users experience problem while watching video

Cloud-based mobile video-optimization leader, Skyfire, a fully-owned subsidiary of Opera Software, has found through extensive testing that 83 percent of users on 3G experience at least some stalling while trying to watch video.

More than half, i.e. 56 percent of video consumers on India’s 3G networks suffer from significant stalling and re-buffering, leading to frustrated users and high video abandonment rates.

Skyfire’s data shows that on India’s 3G networks, 40 percent of all video streams ran at bit rates of less than 300 kbps, a very low speed for video playback on mobile devices. On mobile devices, HD video requires five to ten times higher bandwidth, and the immensely popular auto-play videos within the Vine and Instagram apps use a much higher bitrate (900-1,300 kbps); therefore they will typically not play without frustratingly long start times.

India’s 2G networks fared even worse for mobile video. On 2G, over 99 percent of users experienced at least some stalling.

“With video consumption clearly skyrocketing and causing such experience-impacting congestion in India, the country’s operators should implement cost-effective and quick-to-market solutions to enhance the end-user mobile video streaming experience,” says Sunil Kamath, vice president for South Asia, Opera Software.

“Indian operators have the opportunity to couple their regional LTE rollouts with mobile video optimization to expand capacity across 2G, 3G and 4G networks nationwide. Thanks to surgical, cloud-based, NFV-ready solutions now available, like Skyfire’s Rocket Optimizer, India can get this rolled out now, ensuring that users get relief from constant stalling and re-buffering,” added Kamath.

To conduct the study, Skyfire combined its global data on mobile video network loads with extensive bandwidth test data from wireless network authority OpenSignal, using recent data from 2013 on India’s networks.

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