Cisco: Power users driving ‘Net traffic

Wed, 10/21/2009 - 8:20am
Brian Santo

A minority percentage of users continue to generate the majority of Internet traffic, according to the latest global traffic report compiled by Cisco Systems. That traffic continues to grow, with peak usage occurring during evening hours and driven by the use of social media and broadband video.

The top 1 percent of global subscribers generated more than 20 percent of all traffic. The top 10 percent of global subscribers generated more than 60 percent of all traffic, according to Cisco’s latest Visual Networking Index (VNI) Usage report. These are actual usage figures based on data gathered from service providers, in contrast to traffic projections that Cisco also produces.

Globally, the average broadband connection consumes about 4.3 gigabytes of visual networking applications (advanced services such as video, social networking and collaboration) traffic per month.

In an average day over the reported quarter, Internet primetime spans from approximately 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. around the world, Cisco reported. This contrasts with broadcast TV primetime, which is generally from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. across most global markets. One quarter (or 93.3 megabytes per day, per connection) of global Internet traffic is generated during the Internet "primetime" period.

A peak Internet hour has 20 percent more traffic than a non-peak Internet hour, according to Cisco’s data. The peak Internet hour averages 18 megabytes of traffic per connection (per hour), while non-peak Internet hours average 15 megabytes of traffic per connection (per hour). The peak Internet visual networking hour, meanwhile, has almost 25 percent more traffic than average hourly Internet traffic.

This new Cisco VNI Usage study provides quantitative insights into current activity on service provider networks during the third quarter of calendar year 2009. The research effort is a cooperative program between Cisco and a group of more than 20 service providers worldwide that share their anonymous, aggregated network usage data to help them analyze network usage trends, anticipate infrastructure changes and develop future architectural guidelines.

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•  Cisco: Power users driving 'Net traffic
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