Internet capacity remains sufficient - says the updated BEREC summary report

16 April 2020

There are no major network congestions due to the increase in internet traffic in Europe since last week. Instead, more and more countries report on stabilization in an overall traffic, according to the latest BEREC summary report on the internet capacity during the COVID-19 outbreak.

This report summarises the main findings of the ongoing, twice-weekly information gathering exercise and includes the most recent data provided to BEREC by its constituent national regulatory authorities (NRAs) as of 14 April 2020. 31 NRAs have shared information about the impact of the crisis on the internet service providers (ISPs) networks and the actions taken so far.

With the view to ease the situation due to the outbreak of COVID-19, particular steps will be taken in several EU Member States for the benefit of end-users. For example, in Portugal the professionals of the national health service dealing with COVID-19 patients will receive “communication benefits” such as 10 000 voice minutes for national fixed and mobile networks, 10 000 SMS for national mobile networks and 10GB of data. In Poland, the operators have increased the data caps, as well as extended the deadlines to pay invoices for elderly.   

Apart from the periodical reporting, the ISPs are requested to immediately notify the NRAs about any exceptional measure put in place. This is particularly relevant for the application of any exceptional traffic management measure.  Pursuant to the Open Internet Regulation, the operators may apply exceptional traffic management measures to prevent impending network congestion and to mitigate the effects of exceptional or temporary network congestion, always under the condition that equivalent categories of traffic are treated equally.

The next status update is due on Friday 17 April and can be found on BEREC website.