Netflix has accomplished a feat that no one before them has been able to do. The company has taken the majority of internet traffic away from all other websites, including the peer-to-peer file sharing sites.
Prior to this, the majority of traffic online was held by sites that allowed users to download pirated and copyrighted content. As of the Spring Traffic Report 2011 from Sandvine, that has changed and users now seek out legal and paid for content instead. This is the first time in the history of the internet that pirated content was not holding the majority share of internet traffic.
Netflix currently holds 22.2% of the traffic online which places them slightly ahead of BitTorrent who has 21.6%. During the peak hours Netflix gains as much as a 30% share of traffic.
As more and more content becomes available through instant streaming, users find there is less need to take the risk associated with downloading the copyrighted content. Experts still say the pirated content will continue to be around due to the lack of current movies and content being available through instant streaming.
The results indicate that as traffic to Netflix increases, the traffic to other sites including social networks will decrease. However, there was no evidence that the traffic to these sites had gone down at all.
Users seem to be enjoying the fact that they can receive unlimited movie and TV shows through instant streams via Netflix for around $8 per month.