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Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2010–2015

The Cisco® Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update is part of the comprehensive Cisco VNI Forecast, an ongoing initiative to track and forecast the impact of visual networking applications on global networks. This paper presents some of Cisco’s major global mobile data traffic projections and growth trends.

Executive Summary

The Mobile Network in 2010 and 2011

Global mobile data traffic grew 2.6-fold in 2010, nearly tripling for the third year in a row. The 2010 mobile data traffic growth rate was higher than anticipated. Last year’s forecast projected that the growth rate would be 149 percent. This year’s estimate is that global mobile data traffic grew 159 percent in 2010.

Last year’s mobile data traffic was three times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000. Global mobile data traffic in 2010 (237 petabytes per month) was over three times greater than the total global Internet traffic in 2000 (75 petabytes per month).

Mobile video traffic will exceed 50 percent for the first time in 2011. Mobile video traffic was 49.8 percent of total mobile data traffic at the end of 2010, and will account for 52.8 percent of traffic by the end of 2011.

Mobile network connection speeds doubled in 2010. Globally, the average mobile network downstream speed in 2010 was 215 kilobits per second (kbps), up from 101 kbps in 2009. The average mobile network connection speed for smartphones in 2010 was 1040 kbps, up from 625 kbps in 2009.

The top 1 percent of mobile data subscribers generate over 20 percent of mobile data traffic, down from 30 percent 1 year ago. According to a mobile data usage study conducted by Cisco, mobile data traffic has evened out over the last year and now matches the 1:20 ratio that has been true of fixed networks for several years. Similarly, the top 10 percent of mobile data subscribers now generate approximately 60 percent of mobile data traffic, down from 70 percent at the beginning of the year.

Average smartphone usage doubled in 2010. The average amount of traffic per smartphone in 2010 was 79 MB per month, up from 35 MB per month in 2009.

Continue reading this article at: Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2010–2015  [Visual Networking Index] – Cisco Systems.