According to networking giant Cisco Systems, the amount of Internet traffic worldwide will quadruple by 2015, driven by the explosion in the number of connected devices and connected people, the amount of video and faster broadband speeds. By 2015, network traffic will have quadrupled to 966 exabytes per year as a content hungry populace gains access to cyberspace on more than 15 billion network connected devices that, ironically enough, will outnumber people 2 to 1.
The projected increase of Internet traffic between 2014 and 2015 alone is 200 exabytes, which is greater than the total amount of Internet Protocol traffic generated globally in 2010. On the verge of reaching 1 zettabyte, which is equal to a sextillion bytes, or a trillion gigabytes by 2015, global IP traffic growth is driven by four primary factors, according to Cisco.
The proliferation of tablets, mobile phones, connected appliances and other smart machines is driving up the demand for connectivity, it said.
“The explosive growth in Internet data traffic, especially video, creates an opportunity in the years ahead for optimizing and monetizing visual, virtual and mobile Internet experiences. As architect of the next-generation Internet, Cisco stands ready to help our customers not only accommodate this rapid expansion of Internet activity through the evolution of their networks but also help them thrive as a result of it,” said Suraj Shetty, vice president of worldwide service provider marketing, Cisco.
While not addressed in Cisco’s report, the numbers are further cause for concern for arbitrary data caps with overage fees. According to Cisco, the average fixed broadband speed in 2015 will reach 28Mbps, up from 7Mbps in 2010.
Service providers also will have to deal with the blurring of the line between fixed and mobile traffic, as consumers increasingly expect to have the same experience on their mobile devices as they do on their PCs or connected televisions.
The same warnings are there for networking vendors, including Cisco, Webster said. They need to build technology that not only increases capacity and scalability, but also is more intelligent.
By projecting accelerated internet adoption, Cisco is implying associated growth in many other fields. How many industries are required to fuel telecommunications growth and how many are in turn impacted by it? It’s quite possible that Cisco VNI isn’t a vision for the future of internet traffic, but a vision of technology as a whole. If something as central as online activity is going to grow exponentially, then maybe the entirety of science and technology will come along for the ride.
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