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Cisco’s Visual Networking Index: Understanding the Evolution of Internet Users, Devices and Connections

Today’s networks are an essential part of business, education, government, and home communications. Many residential, business, and mobile Internet Protocol (IP) networking trends are being driven largely by the combination of video, social networking, and advanced collaboration applications, termed “visual networking.”  In fact, total Internet traffic has experienced dramatic growth in the past decade alone.

Take a look at this interactive infographic from Cisco that shows key trends and forecasts the growth of global IP traffic from 2013 to 2018. You can choose a category and filter the geographic regions in the map to view the impact of global IP traffic. According to Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI), globally, there will be 20.6 billion networked devices by 2018, up from 12.4 billion in 2013. VNI is part of Cisco’s ongoing effort to forecast and analyze the growth and use of IP networks worldwide. VNI also forecasts that global Internet Protocol (IP) traffic will increase nearly three-fold over the next five years due to more Internet users and devices, faster broadband speeds and increased video viewing. Global IP traffic for fixed and mobile connections is expected to reach an annual run rate of 1.6 zettabytes – more than one and a half trillion gigabytes per year by 2018.

So who and what are responsible for the projected increase in overall internet traffic?

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2014 Cisco VNI Forecast: It’s not just about big numbers

Today, Cisco released the updated VNI Global IP Traffic and Service Adoption Forecasts, 2013 – 2018 (see media release). The key drivers of global IP traffic growth (network users, devices/connections, broadband speeds, and video consumption) continue to show increases that will create a greater global demand for IP network resources:

  • By 2018, there will be nearly four billion global Internet users (about 52% of the world’s population), up from 2.5 billion in 2013
  • By 2018, there will be 21 billion networked devices and connections globally, up from 12 billion in 2013
  • Globally, the average fixed broadband connection speed will increase 2.6-fold, from 16 Mbps in 2013 to 42 Mbps by 2018
  • Globally, IP video will represent 79% of all traffic by 2018, up from 66% in 2013

As a result of these fundamentals, we are projecting that global IP traffic will grow three-fold from 2013 to 2018 --reaching 1.6 Zettabytes annually by 2018 (a 21% CAGR over the forecast period).

While quantifying the projected growth Read More »

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