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TalkTalk Sees UK Internet Traffic Fall by 13% as Lockdown Eases

Friday, April 23rd, 2021 (7:51 am) - Score 2,088
Laptop and coffee in outdoor office

The combination of good weather and the further easing of COVID-19 related lockdown restrictions has, according to UK ISP TalkTalk, seen weekly broadband traffic on their network fall by 13% since the latest relaxation of rules started on 12th April 2021. In short, we’re all spending more time outside.

The news comes after TalkTalk revealed in February 2021 that UK internet usage on their network increased nationally by 40% during 2020 (here). But it won’t be long before the usual trends of growth return and the ISP already expects peak network traffic to double by 2025.

We should point out that demand for data is constantly rising and so new peaks of usage are typically being set all the time by every ISP. In previous years’ Ofcom’s data has tended to indicate that consumer broadband usage alone grows by an average of over 30% each year, although the global pandemic and multiple lockdowns did accelerate such trends during 2020.

Phil Haslam, TalkTalk’s Chief Networks and Service Officer, said:

“Last week we welcomed back many freedoms we hadn’t had in England for several months – the ability to see friends at the pub, go shopping, eat out, go for a haircut or a workout. Combined with the Easter holidays and the good weather across much of the country, our customers clearly took advantage of that. However with hybrid working, online gaming and streaming continuing to require large amounts of data we expect peak network traffic to double by 2025.”

However, one possible catch here is that TalkTalk were comparing the week commencing 12th April with the prior week (5th April onwards). The prior week is also when the London Internet Exchange (LINX) reported having seen a rise in traffic above the normal baseline (here) – this seemed to occur for two days in that same week. As such we suspect that TalkTalk’s base of comparison may have been a little higher than normal.

NOTE: LINX does not provide a complete overview of the internet traffic flow from all ISPs (e.g. BT alone sees much bigger traffic peaks of c.20Tbps), but they do give a useful indication of how much extra traffic is flowing around as trends seen on other networks tend to show up in their data.

linx_uk_traffic_to_april_22nd_2021

Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. Cj says:

    More like because people realise TT is one of the worst ISPs in the United Kingdom lmao

  2. A_Builder says:

    Does this include TT business traffic?

    If it does include TT business traffic that would be surprising as there was a big shift off corporate -> domestic networks at the start of lockdown.

    My instinct is that this does not include TT leased line business.

  3. Rbz says:

    I’m TalkTalk user for 10+ years.
    On December 2020 my broadband speed reduced from 56Mbps to around 44Mbps…

  4. Just a thought says:

    ….. But the above inflation price rises (to cover the extra use people have been making while locked down) will still apply every year on ‘fixed’ price contracts.

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