Vodafone and TalkTalk experiencing 20-30% increased demand on networks
Vodafone announced it is experiencing a 30% rise in internet traffic across its UK cable and mobile networks.
TalkTalk also said that its daytime network traffic has risen 20% since Monday.
The increased demand comes from remote-access technologies, webmail, and video conferencing apps as more people work from home during the coronavirus pandemic.
By way of managing demand, EU Commissioner Thierry Breton said on Wednesday evening that content providers (iPlayer, Netflix, online gaming services) should switch to standard definition feeds.
The online "busy hours", which normally run from 18:00 to 20:00, now start closer to 13:00.
Both Vodafone and TalkTalk played down suggestions that they couldn't cope with the increased demand.
A Vodafone spokesman told the BBC: "We have enough headroom to meet growing demand and to keep the UK connected," and that their "network team is keeping a constant watch on the situation."
TalkTalk said: "We continually optimise our network for both our consumer and business customers and are well prepared to ensure they receive reliable connectivity."
The soon-to-be-launched Disney+ in the UK offers 4K-resolution content, and the BBC's online classes for children amid school closures could put the networks under more strain.