TCP Network Latency and Throughput

Or ‘Why your customer doesn’t receive the Throughput they paid for’

Diagram showing Network latency and throughput

Most of the streaming video on the internet uses Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). Video streaming services or applications such as Netflix, Amazon and YouTube all use TCP for streaming video. These services account for the bulk of video streaming in the Western world. TCP was designed to ensure delivery of all packets and minimize packet loss. It is a connection oriented protocol which ensures quality of service by re-transmitting packets until all packets are received correctly. An unintended consequence is that TCP is extremely sensitive to network delay as it is a reliable protocol, which means that significant re-transmission can occur, and this along with the TCP handshake process is made worse by long transmission delays.

This white paper explains the effect of latency and packet loss and why your customers may not be receiving the throughput they expected which can lead to complaints.


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