Video to Drive 50% of Net Traffic

Internet video will account for half of all consumer Internet traffic by 2012, according to new research from Cisco. In its Visual Networking Index (PDF), the company says video already accounts for a quarter of all consumer Internet traffic, a number that will rise to 32 percent by the end of the year.

Since Cisco sells the gear that gets this video to your home, you might be wary of these numbers. Om, however, has read the report and is taking it seriously.

Some more stats:

Internet video-to-PC traffic will make up the majority of Internet video traffic in 2012, but Internet video-to-TV traffic will grow rapidly. This is a big opportunity for set-top box makers looking to bridge oldteevee and newteevee.

Fueled by VOD and HD, consumer IPTV and cable TV traffic will grow at a 68 percent compound annual growth rate between 2007 and 2012. Time for studios to get their content on-demand day and date with DVDs!

While P2P file-sharing networks currently carry two exabytes worth of data each month, their percentage of consumer Internet traffic will decrease as Internet video streaming and downloading take a larger chunk of bandwidth. As more people find legitimate outlets for video, perhaps the studios can relax their crusade against piracy (though I wouldn’t hold my breath).

While we, for one, welcome our new online video overlords, chances are good that this will provide more incentive for cable companies and telcos to put an even bigger squeeze on consumer bandwidth with by increasingly offering tiered/metering access.