Press release - BEREC report on the status of internet capacity

Document number: BoR (20) 74

Document date: 30-03-2020

Date of registration: 30-03-2020

Document type:
Author: BEREC

On 19 March 2020, BEREC released a joint statement together with the European Commission, on how network operators can cope with the increased demand on network capacity.

BEREC committed to setting up a special monitoring mechanism to ensure regular monitoring of the Internet traffic situation in each Member State to be able to respond swiftly to capacity issues. In order to follow-up on this statement, and in accordance with Article 40(2) of the BEREC Regulation, the European Commission has requested that BEREC deliver regular monitoring, at least twice a week, and signal any significant unexpected event of the Internet traffic situation in each Member State linked to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The main findings of the first information gathering exercise by BEREC on 24 March 2020, showed that the overall traffic on fixed and on mobile networks has increased during the Covid-19 crisis, but that no major congestion issues have occurred. According to the information available, network operators have been able to cope well with this additional traffic load. Some local and temporary difficulties with the internet access have been observed and mitigated but has not been considered to be out of the ordinary. In some Member States, operators have implemented customer-friendly measures such as increasing the amount of mobile data in the subscriptions for a limited period. A stabilisation in the traffic as well as a decrease in the peak traffic was also noted by some NRAs after traffic reducing measures were put in place by some of the larger CAPs.

NRAs are monitoring the situation and are regularly collecting data from the ISPs and other market players. Several NRAs are also in close cooperation with their respective ministries and other authorities. BEREC will continue its reporting of the effects on increased demand for network connectivity and internet access to the EU Commission for as long as deemed necessary.