4G And M2M Will Boost Mobile Traffic To 292 Exabytes By 2019

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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Cisco report predicts there will be 11.3 billion mobile connections within four years

Cisco claims the amount of global mobile data traffic will explode to 292 Exabytes a year by 2019 thanks to the spread of 4G and M2M, along with increased adoption of smartphones and wearables.

The networking firm’s annual Visual Networking Index (VNI), based on analyst forecasts, mobile data studies and Cisco’s own estimates, predicts 97 percent of all mobile traffic will be generated by smart devices – an increase from 88 percent in 2014.

The report claims there will be 5.2 billion mobile users within four years, one billion more than 2014, with many switching from feature phones to smartphones. Cisco predicts there will be 578 million wearable devices, contributing to 11.5 billion combined mobile and M2M connections.

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mobile apps3G will become the world’s dominant cellular technology in terms of users by 2017, but the number of 4G connections will rise from 459 million to three billion. 4G is expected to generate 68 percent of the world’s mobile traffic, 72 percent of which will be mobile dido, and 21.8 Exabytes of which will result from the use of cloud services like Spotify.

However, despite the spread of LTE, cellular traffic will be overtaken by the amount of data offloaded to Wi-Fi networks. Currently, 46 percent of traffic is offloaded, but by 2019 this will increase to 54 percent and Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi) will be more popular than Voice over LTE (VoLTE).

Cisco claims UK mobile data traffic will increase from 74.2 petabytes in 2014 to 634.4 petabytes, again boosted by wearables and rising data use by smartphone users. 4G networks will account for 88.2 percent of all traffic, compared to 42.2 percent today.

“The ongoing adoption of more powerful mobile devices and wider deployments of emerging M2M applications, combined with broader access to faster wireless networks, will be key contributors to significant mobile traffic growth in the coming years,” says Doug Webster, vice president of products and solutions marketing at Cisco.

“This mobile-friendly environment will give service providers a new landscape of challenges and opportunities to innovatively deliver a variety of mobile services and experiences to consumers and business users as the Internet of Everything (IoE) continues to take shape.”

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