Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

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Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby spatter9999 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 7:44 pm

I have a 10Mbps downstream connection with ATT UVerse. If watching Netflix directly through my computer, I am able to take full advantage of that connection. However, when I watch Netflix through my Sony bluRay player, the movie I am viewing is ROUTED THROUGH the Sony server, then sent to my device, slowing playback to 1.5Mbps and causing lots of buffering issues. Does Roku route through a Roku server, or will the device stream directly from the netflix server?

Here's another way to think about it. When viewing Netflix on my PC, there are only 2 limiting factors:
1) The speed at which Netflix can send data out
2) The speed at which I can bring data into my home (set by my ISP)

Whichever of these is slowest will determine the quality of the stream.

When viewing Netflix on Sony BluRay player, there are 3 limiting factors:
1) The speed at which Netflix can send data to the Sony server
2) The speed at which the Sony server can send the data back out to me
3) The speed at which I can bring data into my home (set by my ISP)

Whichever of these is slowest will determine the quality of the stream.

Unfortunately for me, Sony's servers are awful. Regardless of how much I increase my connection speed with the ISP, there's nothing I can do to improve Sony's servers. That will always be the limiting factor for me.

Would Roku solve this for me? Or will I just be at the mercy of their servers?
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby kc8pql » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:21 pm


Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

No. You are connecting directly to the channel's' CDN.
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby jellybean7 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:22 pm

Roku doesn't maintain any servers. They are simply an internet interface
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby trekkeriii » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:36 pm

jellybean7 wrote:Roku doesn't maintain any servers. They are simply an internet interface


Untrue, the Channel Store and new Search Feature are through Roku's servers, as well as the Main Screen. However, once you are in the Netflix channel, it accesses the Netflix servers directly.
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby jellybean7 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:44 pm

trekkeriii wrote:
jellybean7 wrote:Roku doesn't maintain any servers. They are simply an internet interface


Untrue, the Channel Store and new Search Feature are through Roku's servers, as well as the Main Screen. However, once you are in the Netflix channel, it accesses the Netflix servers directly.



thanks for nitpicking. In the context of the persons question, what I said is accurate. All of the CONTENT is directly from the internet. The miniscule amount of title information you refer to is not worth mentioning.
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby DerekHelps » Wed Dec 19, 2012 9:17 pm

spatter9999 wrote:
Here's another way to think about it. When viewing Netflix on my PC, there are only 2 limiting factors:
1) The speed at which Netflix can send data out
2) The speed at which I can bring data into my home (set by my ISP)

Whichever of these is slowest will determine the quality of the stream.

When viewing Netflix on Sony BluRay player, there are 3 limiting factors:
1) The speed at which Netflix can send data to the Sony server
2) The speed at which the Sony server can send the data back out to me
3) The speed at which I can bring data into my home (set by my ISP)

Whichever of these is slowest will determine the quality of the stream.


This is an incredibly overly simplistic way of looking at the way streams are delivered. Netflix streams, like all internet traffic, depend on a number of servers to deliver the content. Content delivery is done through multiple servers in all methods. To prove this point, run a tracerout to a server. Open your start menu, in the run/search bar type "cmd.exe" then, in the window that shows type 'tracert netflix.com' notice that from your computer to netflix there are multiple servers that used in the route from your pc to netflix.
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Re: Does Roku bounce Netflix through their own servers?

Postby mikeyts » Wed Dec 19, 2012 10:28 pm

I was looking at this the other day using the Windows 8 Netflix app. When I started the app it had 2 open connections to a single IP address in Seattle in Amazon's AWS CDN. I started playing a title and it opened something like another 10 connections to 5 or 6 additional IP addresses, most of which were registered to machines in the Witchita, KS area (according to a IP tracing site). Whatever they're doing, it seems pretty complex.

Even if there's some connection brokering done through an OEM's server, which seems unlikely, it's not funneling streaming content to your Roku to such a server and then to you.
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