YouTube Cuts Video Quality Worldwide To Ease Internet Traffic During Lockdowns

Image via AngieYeoh /

YouTube will play its videos on the default standard definition to all users globally instead of its usual high-definition quality to help ease the burden on internet networks as usage spikes during lockdowns worldwide.

The video streaming platform previously intended to reduce its viewing quality in Europe, but will now extend its policy to the rest of the world. YouTube estimates to run its videos on standard definition for 30 days as people stay indoors during the COVID-19 outbreak.

However, the platform told CNN that users will still be able to switch to a higher definition by manually changing the resolutions of their videos.

YouTube explained that the move was initiated “to minimize stress on the system during this unprecedented situation.”

The website has additionally shared a thread of some of its creators’ videos to provide company to those in self-isolation. Check out a few of them below.

For those of you who can #StayHome, some creator #WithMe videos to help you keep boredom, hunger and cabin fever at bay.

— YouTube #StayHome (@YouTube) March 18, 2020

@zoeherdt Real Time Read #WithMe for storytime 📚 – Find more page-turning vids on this Read With Me playlist:

— YouTube #StayHome (@YouTube) March 18, 2020

Terri-ann’s Kitchen’s for that awesome Jerk Chicken 🍗 – Find more delicious vids on this Cook #WithMe playlist:

— YouTube #StayHome (@YouTube) March 18, 2020

@drawwiffwaffles sketch #WithMe for getting the creative juices flowing ✏️ – Find more creativity-sparking vids on this Draw with Me playlist:

— YouTube #StayHome (@YouTube) March 18, 2020

[via CNN, cover image via AngieYeoh /]

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