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Google switching Nest Cams to default streaming quality amid COVID-19

From YouTube to Stadia, services around the world are adjusting streaming quality to minimize network strain due to the surge in remote work and distance learning. In response to COVID-19, Google today announced that Nest Cams will switch to default quality to help conserve bandwidth.

In an email to customers this morning, Google announced that it’s “temporarily adjusting your camera quality and bandwidth” to the default setting. The Low, Medium (low/high), and High tiers have always been governed by what connection is available, but the company is now doing more to mitigate general strain.

The company cites the broader ISP impacts of “dropped video calls or frozen screens” rather than any specific affect on Nest services.

This change is temporary, and you may notice a difference in quality, but only the quality and bandwidth setting will be adjusted. All other settings will stay the same, and all core features will continue to work.

Users are being advised about the change in quality as this rolls out over the next few days. Like YouTube, users can manually switch to a higher video quality in device settings at anytime.

You’ll see a notification from your Nest app when the change has been made, and we’ll let you know when this setting is restored to its original state.

Like other Google Nest changes implemented at the server-side level, some users are rather upset by today’s change.

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: