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Cisco Expect Global Average Fixed Broadband Speeds to Hit 39Mbps in 2017

Thursday, May 30th, 2013 (9:04 am) - Score 1,124

Cisco has published its annual 2013 Visual Networking Index (VNI) forecast, which predicts that global internet (IP) traffic (fixed line and mobile) will grow from 44 Exabytes per month in 2012 to 121 Exabytes by 2017 (annual run rate of 1.4 Zettabytes). As usual this will be driven by faster broadband ISP technologies and online video content, especially in the UK.

The growth in superfast fibre optic (FTTC/P etc.) based connectivity services will also help to push average global fixed line broadband ISP speeds from 11.3Mbps (Megabits per second) in 2012 to 39Mbps by 2017.

Likewise Mobile Broadband services, supported by the latest 3G and 4G technologies, will see their average speeds rise from 526Kbps (0.5Mbps) to 3,898Kbps (just under 4Mbps) over the same period.

Consumer Internet video traffic, which accounted for 57% of online data use in 2012, is expected to continue being a big driver for faster speeds and will grow to account for 69% of all internet traffic in 2017. Globally, there will be nearly 2 Billion Internet video users (excluding mobile-only) by 2017, up from 1 Billion in 2012. The following table explains how consumer internet traffic will be split around the world (PB means Petabytes).

consumer internet traffic 2012 to 2017

Cisco also predicts that nearly half of the world’s population will have network and Internet access by 2017 and the average Internet household (globally) will generate 74.5 Gigabytes per month. By comparison, in 2012, the average Internet household generated 31.6GB of traffic per month. WiFi and mobile-connected devices will generate 68% of total Internet traffic by 2017.

The study also expects 3.6 billion Internet users to be online by 2017, which equates to 48% of the world’s projected population (7.6 billion people) and represents a sharp increase from the 2.3 billion that used the internet during 2012 (32% of the world’s population). But we’ll all be using more kit (Smartphones, Tablets, PC’s etc.) and thus by 2017 the world will be home to 19 billion networked devices (up from 12bn in 2012).

The VNI also allows us to break-down the results for the United Kingdom, which reveals that we will be home to 52 million internet users in 2017 (up from 49 million in 2012) and our average broadband speed will grow 3.0-fold from 2012 to 2017, from 16.5Mbps to 50Mbps. The UK average mobile connection speed will grow from 1,607kbps in 2012 to 7,770kbps in 2017 (close to 8Mbps). Overall 74% of broadband connections will be faster than 10Mbps in 2017, up from 49% today.

Cisco Visual Networking Index 2012-2017

By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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