Highlights of the CISCO Visual NBetworking Index foreacsts (2012-17):
Growth in Mobile data traffic
Global mobile data traffic will jump by 13 times over to a rate of 11.2 exabytes consumed globally per month at an annual run rate of 134 exabytes. To put this in a frame of reference, the monthly rate for 2012 was 0.9 exabytes of mobile data traffic.
The highest growth rate for mobile data traffic in the Middle East and Africa at a rate of with 17.3-fold growth. But the Asia/Pacific region is expected to dominate with the most mobile traffic overall, accumulating 5.3 exabytes per month by 2017.
Global mobile data traffic grew 70 percent in 2012.
Global mobile data traffic reached 885 petabytes per month at the end of 2012, up from 520 petabytes per month at the end of 2011. The amount of mobile Internet data traffic is poised to explode in the next four years — especially in Africa and the Asia/Pacific region.
Last year’s mobile data traffic was nearly twelve times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000.
Global mobile data traffic in 2012 (885 petabytes per month) was nearly twelve times greater than the total global Internet traffic in 2000 (75 petabytes per month).
Mobile video traffic exceeded 50 percent for the first time in 2012.
Mobile video traffic was 51 percent of traffic by the end of 2012.
Mobile network connection speeds more than doubled in 2012.
Globally, the average mobile network downstream speed in 2012 was 526 kilobits per second (kbps), up from 248 kbps in 2011. The average mobile network connection speed for smartphones in 2012 was 2,064 kbps, up from 1,211 kbps in 2011. The average mobile network connection speed for tablets in 2012 was 3,683 kbps, up from 2,030 kbps in 2011.
In 2012, a fourth-generation (4G) connection generated 19 times more traffic on average than a non-4G connection.
Although 4G connections represent only 0.9 percent of mobile connections today, they already account for 14 percent of mobile data traffic.
The top 1 percent of mobile data subscribers generate 16 percent of mobile data traffic, down from 52 percent at the beginning of 2010.
According to a mobile data usage study conducted by Cisco, mobile data traffic has evened out over the last year and is now lower than the 1:20 ratio that has been true of fixed networks for several years.
Average smartphone usage grew 81 percent in 2012.
The average amount of traffic per smartphone in 2012 was 342 MB per month, up from 189 MB per month in 2011.
Smartphones represented only 18 percent of total global handsets in use in 2012, but represented 92 percent of total global handset traffic.
In 2012, the typical smartphone generated 50 times more mobile data traffic (342 MB per month) than the typical basic-feature cell phone (which generated only 6.8 MB per month of mobile data traffic).
Globally, 33 percent of total mobile data traffic was offloaded onto the fixed network through Wi-Fi or femtocell in 2012.
In 2012, 429 petabytes of mobile data traffic were offloaded onto the fixed network each month. Without offload, mobile data traffic would have grown 96 percent rather than 70 percent in 2012.
Android is now higher than iPhone levels of data use.
By the end of 2012, average Android consumption exceeded average iPhone consumption in the United States and Western Europe.
In 2012, 14 percent of mobile devices and connections were potentially IPv6-capable.
This estimate is based on network connection speed and OS capability.
In 2012, the number of mobile-connected tablets increased 2.5-fold to 36 million, and each tablet generated 2.4 times more traffic than the average smartphone.
In 2012, mobile data traffic per tablet was 820 MB per month, compared to 342 MB per month per smartphone.
There were 161 million laptops on the mobile network in 2012, and each laptop generated 7 times more traffic than the average smartphone.
Mobile data traffic per laptop was 2.5 GB per month in 2012, up 11 percent from 2.3 GB per month in 2011.
Nonsmartphone usage increased 35 percent to 6.8 MB per month in 2012, compared to 5.0 MB per month in 2011.
Basic handsets still make up the vast majority of handsets on the network (82 percent).
Data traffic driven by profusion of devices not so much in terms of numbers of users
Cisco is predicting there will be 5.2 billion mobile users – up from 4.3 billion in 2012. But they also predicted that there will be more than 10 billion connected devices (including more than 1.7 billion M2M connections) within four years – up from 7 billion total in 2012.
Mobile data traffic to increase 18-fold by 2016 – CISCO
Between 2011 and 2016 the amount of mobile data traffic will grow at a compound annual rate of 78 percent as the number of mobile devices connected to the Internet exceeds the number of people on Earth in four years’ time, according to a study by Cisco.The United Nations projects that world population will reach 7.3 billion by 2016. By that time, according to Cisco’s annual visual networking index forecast, there will be more than 10 billion devices, generating global mobile data traffic of 10.8 exabytes per month.
That translates into around 130 exabytes of mobile data per year which is equivalent to 33 billion DVDs or 813 quadrillion text messages. While most of the devices driving mobile data traffic will be smartphones, ,laptops and other portable gadgets; M2M machine-to-machine connections are gaining momentum and by 2016 and are expected to reach 2 billion. Machine-to-machine connections (M2M) include GPS systems in cars, tracking systems in fleets and ships or meters to record energy consumption.
Mobile data, especially video, will put a strain on wireless networks and while service providers are increasingly offloading mobile traffic to their fixed-line networks, there is a need for additional spectrum to keep up with demand. Quality-of-service issues are seen to be arising in major metropolitan areas due to the increase in mobile data traffic.