According to the Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) "Visual Networking Index (VNI) Complete Forecast for 2015 to 2020," global IP traffic will nearly triple at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22% over the next five years. More than 1 billion new Internet users are expected to join the global Internet community, growing from 3 billion in 2015 to 4.1 billion by 2020. The global digital transformation, based on the adoption of personal devices and deployment of machine-to-machine (M2M) connections, is expected to have an even greater impact on traffic growth. Over the next five years, global IP networks are expected to support up to 10 billion new devices and connections, increasing from 16.3 billion in 2015 to 26.3 billion by 2020. There are projected to be 3.4 devices and connections per capita by 2020, up from 2.2 per capita in 2015.
Advancements in the Internet of Things (IoT) are continuing to drive IP traffic and tangible growth in the market. Applications such as video surveillance, smart meters, digital health monitors and a host of other M2M services are creating new network requirements and incremental traffic increases. Globally, M2M connections are calculated to grow nearly three-fold from 4.9 billion in 2015 to 12.2 billion by 2020, representing 46% of total connected devices. The connected health consumer segment is expected to have the fastest growth (five-fold) of M2M connections from 2015 (144 million) to 2020 (729 million). The connected home segment is expected to have the largest volume of M2M connections over the forecast period with 2.4 billion in 2015, growing to 5.8 billion by 2020 - nearly half of all M2M connections.
Video services and content continue to be the dominant leader compared with all other applications. Internet video is expected to account for 79% of global Internet traffic by 2020, up from 63% in 2015. The world is expected to reach 3 trillion Internet video minutes per month by 2020, which is 5 million years of video per month, or about 1 million video minutes every second. HD and UltraHD Internet video are expected to make up 82% of Internet video traffic by 2020, up from 53% in 2015.
With the growing dependence on mobile and fixed broadband networks, security concerns are increasingly becoming top of mind for service providers, governments, businesses and consumers. For the first time in this forecast, Cisco collaborated with Arbor Networks to help quantify the current and future threats of DDoS (distributed denial of service) attacks. DDoS incidents can paralyze networks by flooding servers and network devices with traffic from multiple IP sources. The new DDoS analysis suggests that these types of breaches can represent up to 10% of a country's total Internet traffic while they are occurring. Over the next five years, DDoS attacks are projected to increase from 6.6 million to 17 million attacks. These initial findings underscore the need for more comprehensive security measures to protect data and reduce network exposure to such risks.
"The digital transformation is happening now for billions of consumers and businesses users across the globe," said Doug Webster, vice president of service provider marketing, Cisco. "Innovation is imperative for Cisco and its service provider customers to deliver scalable, secure, high-quality services and experiences over all types of broadband network infrastructures."