January 24, 2011, 11:30 AM — HONOLULU -- Network demand will explode, fueled by unexpected growth in ambient video, like puppy cams and surveillance video, according to reports from the 33rd Pacific Telecommunications Council (PTC) conference held last week in Hawaii.
Several thousand technology professionals from across the Pacific hemisphere attended the annual conference. Delegates from the United States were the largest bloc, with Hong Kong SAR and China next, followed by Japan, India, Singapore and many Asia-Pacific regions and countries.
Telegeography Research presented estimates that global broadband Internet subscribers will climb to more than 700 million by 2013, with more than 300 million from Asia, compared to about 100 million in North America, and nearly 200 million in Europe.
GAUGING THE VOLUME: What to expect in data storage and network traffic growth in 2011
And Robert Pepper, Cisco vice president for global technology policy, presented findings from the company's Visual Networking Index, which showed that global IP traffic is expected to increase more than fourfold (4.3 times) from 2009 to 2014.
In fact, global IP traffic is expected to reach 63.9 exabytes per month in 2014. This is equivalent to 766.8 exabytes per year -- almost three-quarters of a zettabyte.The most surprising trend is that video traffic surpassed peer-to-peer volumes in 2010 for the first time.
An unexpected driver in this overall growth of Internet traffic is the surge in ambient video. This is so-called "puppy cam" traffic -- fixed video sources featuring pets, so-called "nanny cam" child care and health monitoring video streams, and especially security camera applications.
``This a much bigger deal than anyone thought,'' said Pepper. He added that the popular Shiba Inu Puppy Cam site was said to have more Internet viewing hours than all of ESPN online video. In fact, of the top online video sites in Europe last year, "three of the top 20 are ambient video, and these didn't exist a year ago."
Other key findings in the Cisco report are:
• Consumer-driven Internet traffic overwhelms business traffic in volume. This shifting composition will lead to 87% consumer traffic vs. 13% business traffic by 2014.