As you probably know, Apple released iOS 5 yesterday for owners of current iOS devices to install and play with. As anyone is likely aware who tried to install the update, Apple’s servers had a hard time keeping up with it all.
But Apple’s data centers (pictured above, while Steve Jobs was introducing them to the world) were only part of the problem, reports The Guardian, as many internet service providers had difficulty keeping up as well. The surge in traffic from iOS 5 updaters was incredible, and many ISP’s struggled to keep the traffic flowing through their networks.
One ISP, AAISP, was caught off guard when they saw “silly high usage since around 18:40 [BST]” leading them to think that “something [was] clearly ‘up’ and there [was] some ‘internet event’ happening”.
The huge surge in traffic isn’t very surprising, considering that massive swarms of Apple customers were all attempting to download 600MB iOS 5 updates, as well as the OS X 10.7.2 update (which wasn’t a particularly small download either), as well as the other updates and new apps that Apple released yesterday. All of these combined lead to quite a demand!
While The Guardian’s report details the struggles that U.K. ISPs had dealing with the issue, it’s likely that ISPs in the US and elsewhere had similar problems. Did Apple really break the internet? Not really. But did they issue one hell of a wake-up call to ISPs everywhere? Absolutely.
Remember when Microsoft almost crashed the internet because everybody was downloading updates for Windows? Me neither. Only Apple could produce this kind of massive surge in web traffic.