Early effects of COVID-19 lockdowns on service provider networks

With the COVID-19 pandemic, we are facing an unprecedented situation on a global level. Entire countries are in lockdown, and people everywhere are being asked to stop or minimize their physical (social) interactions. Our broadband connections are becoming our lifelines – figuratively and literally: we are using them to get news, connect to our work environments (now all virtual), and for entertainment too.

The wave of special emergency measures continues across countries and continents. Let’s take a look at the first effects of this global pandemic on network traffic. In a way, this may be the “shape of things to come” for all other networks.

We analyzed data from several networks in Western Europe from the week of March 9, 2020. We looked at the traffic volumes and patterns. While we were still in the early days of the new reality introduced with special measures, we were able to spot some network anomalies and trends.

Learn more: switch network

Some countries in Western Europe have declared lockdown measures – Day 1 in our analysis is the day the lockdown was enforced. We also continued looking at the situation over the following weekend after the lockdown was declared – which we refer to as Weekend 1 (or Sunday 1, the Sunday in Weekend 1). To provide a better comparison, we looked at day-to-day (workday and weekend day) comparisons against the previous week.

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