Verizon, along with Comcast, has an "interconnect deal" with Netflix, in which Netflix pays both of them for a direct connection to improve streaming quality. With other Internet providers, like AT&T and Time Warner Cable, where there's no paid deal, there's an extra step: data also are sent through an outside company called a transit provider.
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According to Netflix's ISP Speed Index, its paid deal with Comcast is already paying off for its subscribers—Comcast's streaming speeds have improved by more than half since the two companies struck their deal in February.
Verizon's speeds have only improved slightly, but it only made its deal with Netflix at the end of April, and it can take some time to implement the changes to speed things up.
This weekend, with plenty of binge viewing of "Orange is the New Black" expected, streaming performance will be under the spotlight for Verizon and all the other Internet providers. And we'll see if Netflix decides to change its strategy of "testing" blaming Internet providers for buffering. If Netflix doesn't pull the plug on those messages they'll be hearing from Verizon's lawyers next week.
—By CNBC's Julia Boorstin.
Disclosure: Comcast is the owner of NBCUniversal, the parent company of CNBC and CNBC.com.