Estimation of future global IP traffic growth

Visual Networking Index


Cisco has developed a model for the estimation of future global IP traffic growth. The worldwide leader in networking technology for the Internet, Cisco has a unique ability to gather and interpret IP network data as a result of its broad experience with customers and global reach.

Today networks are an essential part of business, education, government, and home communications. Many consumer and business IP networking trends are being driven largely by video and social networking and collaboration (i.e., Web 2.0 technologies), which combined are termed “visual networking.” The Cisco Visual Network Index is the company’s ongoing effort to forecast the growth and use of IP networking worldwide, and it is based on Cisco analysis and independent analysts’ forecasts.

Highlights from the current Cisco Visual Networking Index forecast include the following:

  1. Global IP traffic will increase by a factor of six from 2007 to 2012, reaching 44 exabytes per month in 2012, compared to fewer than 7 exabytes per month in 2007.
  2. Total IP traffic for 2012 will amount to more than half a zettabyte (or 522 exabytes). A zettabyte is a trillion gigabytes.
  3. Monthly global IP traffic in December 2012 will be 11 exabytes higher than in December 2011, a single-year increase that will exceed the amount by which traffic increased in the eight years since 2000.
  4. Video on demand (VoD), IP television (IPTV), and Internet TV will account for nearly 90 percent of all consumer IP traffic in 2012.
  5. Mobile data traffic will roughly double each year from 2008 through 2012.

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