Using its policy server deep packet inspection (DPI) systems, Sandvine said there has of late been a notable increase in Internet traffic associated with Microsoft’s Xbox Live and Apple Computer’s iTunes, following the release of new Xbox games and iTunes 7.
Sandvine said it observed an 80% increase in the number of Xbox Live users across a sampling of North American-based broadband service providers’ networks during the first week following the release of six new Xbox games on November 7, including Gears of War, which sold 1-million copies in the first two weeks.
Earlier, on September 12, Apple released iTunes 7, enabling users to download full feature-length films onto their iPods. Based on data available to Sandvine at that time, North American broadband service providers saw an approximate 140% peak increase attributed to iTunes bandwidth usage in the wake of this release.
“The effect Gears of War and other games are having on networks indicates to service providers that online gaming is not just a craze. Their networks must be equipped to protect this increasingly valuable traffic from the effects of a best-effort network,” said Dave Caputo, president and CEO of Sandvine.