Cisco predicts that streaming video content will power an explosion of global IP data traffic and require internet service providers to become more creative in how they route that traffic. Those networks will also have to deal with 10 billion more connected devices that are part of the growing IoT ecosystem.
According to Cisco’s latest Visual Networking Index (VNI), global IP traffic will more than triple between 2017 and 2022, hitting 396 exabytes per month in 2022. That equates to 4.8 zettabytes of total IP traffic transmitted in 2022, which Cisco says is more than all of the traffic transmitted over the 32 previous years combined.
To handle that growth the Cisco VNI predicts that more than one-third of service provider capacity will bypass the network core by 2022. This will involve the use of edge computing resources that can analyze traffic and route that traffic to the core of the network only when necessary.
While video content will make up 82 percent of all IP traffic in 2022, networks will also be dealing with a flood of new devices. The report predicts that connected devices will increase from 18 billion in 2017, to 28.5 billion in 2022, driven by a surge in IoT connected devices.
Those IoT devices will account for 51 percent of total global devices by 2022, but make up only 6 percent of total global IP traffic. That disparity is because each IoT device will generate only 1.7 gigabytes of data per month compared with more than 26 gigabytes generated by each smartphone.
Cisco also predicts that SD-WAN platforms will play a larger part in directing the flow of IP traffic within enterprises. The study said that SD-WAN traffic will grow at a 37 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2022. That will result in a five-fold increase in total SD-WAN traffic and account for 29 percent of WAN traffic by 2022.
The VNI report predicts that cellular connections will account for 22 percent of global internet traffic in 2022, compared with 12 percent in 2017. Interestingly, the report stated that 12 percent of that cellular traffic in 2022 will come from 5G devices.
In a separate report also released today, Ericsson predicts that there will be 1.5 billion 5G subscribers worldwide by the end of 2024. That report also stated that there will be more than 4.1 billion cellular-based IoT connections in 2024, an annual growth rate of 27 percent.