Unable to go out, more people than ever were online on Friday night.
Kiwis have adjusted their habits and turned to the internet for comfort during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Chorus network peaked at 3.03Tbps (Terabits Per Second), which was up 34 per cent from normal usage. It set a new record for the network, surpassing Thursday’s peak of 2.84Tbps.
The peak in traffic wasn’t just due to binge-watching Kiwis making a dent in online streaming catalogues, but gamers.
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Around 7pm, popular video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone released an upgrade. Chorus believed this added to the spike in users.
This wasn’t the first time the game resulted in a traffic spike. Earlier in the month, another release saw the network reaching its highest level since the Rugby World Cup.
Analysts previously suggested the free game, and other computer games, would see an increase in demand as people adjusted to life at home.
In recent days there had been a couple of network outages – Vodafone NZ had a partial outage of its broadband services on day one of the lockdown – but Chorus said it was able to handle the increased demand.
After seeing data usage spike at 50 per cent above normal levels, Vodafone NZ said on Saturday that usage was sitting 20 per cent up on normal.
Broadband traffic levels were up 32 per cent on normal levels and there was a 20 per cent increase in VodafoneTV viewing.
Vodafone NZ said they were still seeing 60 per cent more phone calls than normal.
The company said they had spare capacity in their networks, but asked Kiwis to “be kind”: “That means that if there are minor, intermittent outages like we experienced this week, please be patient”.
“The Chorus network continues to perform well,” the company said in a statement on Saturday morning.
It anticipated this kind of spike in traffic as Kiwis adjusted to life in lockdown and took advantage of their internet plans, but these levels were expected to stabilise as lockdown progressed.
“As new behaviour patterns settle during the lockdown, Chorus expects traffic levels to reach a steady state.”