The technology research firm Gartner predicts there will be 20 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020. That bandwidth demand will make it difficult for colleges and universities to find ways to expand their use of technology.
To meet anticipated needs, institutions should be able to provide at least 1GB for each residential student, according to a 2016 study from the Association of College and University Technology Advancement. The study also found that nearly 70% of the universities surveyed were already providing that much bandwidth for their students.
Schools must also accept that students have to be connected in the classroom, which means campuses must be expanding their technology capabilities while setting up guidelines to maintain control of the network. To accomplish this, universities may have to collaborate with local partners to make faster networks available for students and the surrounding community.
“The digital transformation is here to stay,” Ivo Pascucci, an expert on the American telecommunications market, wrote in an article for eCampus News. “It is now up to universities to invest in network infrastructure that scales for the future. IT administrators will need to develop a plan that expects to handle cloud storage, millions of devices, virtual reality, 4K and 8K video, and research initiatives.”