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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Traffic Jams Ahead for Information Highway

Over the next few years, it’s going to get a lot more crowded out there on the Internet.

Cisco’s Visual Networking Index Forecast report, released May 29, anticipates that by the year 2017 worldwide Internet protocol (IP) traffic will be three times what it was in 2012. By then, almost half the earth’s population will be connected to the Internet.

While countries such as India, Indonesia, and South Africa will experience the highest growth rates, the United States will generate more Internet traffic than any other nation.

This rapid growth, which is expected to slow down after 2017, is being fueled by a proliferation in the number of Internet users and connected devices, faster fixed broadband network speed, and a spike in the use of Internet video. On average, around the globe, people will be watching three trillion Internet video minutes per month, or about two years’ worth per second. About 63% of that will be 3-D and high-definition video.

However, video won’t be the only application sucking down bandwidth, according to the forecast. By 2017, 49% of Internet traffic will come from non-PC devices, with the greatest growth derived from machine-to-machine modules (applications such as package tracking, ID chips in animals, digital health monitors, and video surveillance, for instance).

Overall, the rise in Internet traffic is tracking right alongside adoption of smartphones.

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