YouTube Goes International - InformationWeek
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YouTube Goes International

Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom now all have local versions of YouTube.

At Google Press Day 2007 in Paris, France, on Tuesday, YouTube co-founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen announced the launch of YouTube in nine different countries.

Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom now all have local versions of YouTube.

"As part of this first step in our international rollout, you can now enjoy fully translated sites, with localized home pages, content, and search functions," said Sakina Arsiwala, YouTube International manager, in a blog post today. "As these sites evolve, so will your localized YouTube experience, including country-specific video rankings, comments and browse pages -- all while being just one click away from the worldwide view."

Notably absent is a German version of YouTube. Arsiwala said that launches for other countries will come soon. None of the international sites feature a localized YouTube blog yet.

In conjunction with its internationalization, YouTube is adding new content partners, including French and Spanish television stations, European soccer teams, and environmental organizations.

More than half of YouTube's visitors now come from outside the U.S, according to Chen.

YouTube's popularity isn't without cost, however. Online video viewing accounts for almost half of the Internet's data traffic. Broadband service vendor Ellacoya Networks said today that HTTP (Web) traffic has overtaken P2P traffic, which represented the largest percentage of network bandwidth during the past four years.

HTTP traffic now accounts for 46% of all Internet traffic. P2P, or peer-to-peer traffic, comes in second at 37%, followed by Newsgroups (9%), non-HTTP video streaming (3%), gaming (2%), and VoIP (1%).

YouTube alone accounts for 20% of all HTTP traffic, or about 10% of all Internet traffic, Ellacoya said. The data is based on the usage patterns of one million broadband subscribers in North America.

"The popularity of browser-based video such as YouTube is having a significant impact not only on overall bandwidth consumption but also on the distribution of application traffic on the network," said Fred Sammartino, VP of marketing and product management at Ellacoya, in a statement. "The way people use the Internet is changing rapidly -- from browsing to real-time streaming. We expect to see new applications over the next year that will accelerate this trend."

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