In January, Netflix opened up its library to Nigerian users and the arrival brought joy to movie buffs. It meant there was no need to hide under a proxy to operate the on demand media platform.
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After Netflix came, it became obvious that bad internet and expensive data plans were going to be its bane in the country.
The ongoing data wars seem to have taken care of the data prices and made it easier — and cheaper — for subscribers to use the service. But the problem of bad internet didn’t look to be going away anytime soon.
On one front, I suspect the Netflix team has been working tirelessly to make the process seamless in Nigeria — and Africa — because according to reports, Netflix has deployed their servers in Lagos.
The server will be the first in West Africa and is going to be hosted by Spectranet. The Internet Service Provider will host the “entire Netflix content library” on its servers.
This new development has a lot of potential and angles to it, but overall it is a welcome development.
Latency is the amount of time it takes for data to go from point A to point B; point A being the point the request was sent out from and point B being where the request is supposed to return results. In order word it is the time interval between stimulation and response.
Buffering — that annoying thing that makes your video take ages to load — is a function of high latency.
When the Netflix servers come closer home, latency is reduced as the server pings do not need to go that far to connect and thus buffering will be greatly reduced.
Keeping customers on board
Since the beginning of the Forex problems in Nigeria, lots of people have cancelled dollar subscriptions. And Netflix was not left out of this forced boycott.
The most common complaint being an increase in the price usually paid without any substantive increment in the quality of view time.
It figures that since Netflix cannot fix Nigeria’s internet problems, bringing the servers down will make the experience smoother and attract more users in the process.