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Cisco sees Internet half full

51% of world's population connected by 2019

Cisco’s most recent Visual Networking Index (VNI), the ongoing report of Internet and IP trends and statistics, finds that more than half of the world’s population will be Internet users by 2019. Also, the number of machine-to-machine (M2M) interconnections – the underpinning of the Internet of Things/Everything – will triple by then.

Another interesting stat is that the VNI expects 3.2 networked devices/connections per capita by 2019, up from two devices per person in 2014. That translates to 24 billion networked devices/connections online by 2019, up from 14 billion in 2014, a compounded annual growth rate of 11.4% and almost half of the 50 billion total connected devices Cisco expects by 2020.

Cisco’s VNI is based on analyst forecasts, real-world mobile data usage studies, and Cisco's own estimates for global IP traffic and service adoption. The company usually updates it two or three times a year.

In 2014, 39% of the world’s population of 7.2 billion were Internet users, according to the VNI. That will increase to 51% of 7.6 billion people in 2019 while annual IP traffic triples during that time.

And within that timeframe, M2M connections globally will grow from 3.3 billion in 2014 to 10.5 billion by 2019. Consumer healthcare will have the fastest M2M connections growth at 8.6X during that time, a compounded annual growth rate of 54%, the VNI finds.

Home connections -- video security, smart meters, lighting/temperature control, etc. -- will account for nearly half of M2M connections by 2019.

In business, global IP traffic will experience a 20% compound annual growth rate between 2014 and 2019. Overall business IP traffic such as web, backup and VoIP, will double between 2014 and 2019; desktop and personal videoconferencing will be the fastest growing business Internet service, growing from 76 million users in 2014 to 220 million users by 2019, or 23.5% per year.

Business traffic will give up a bit more bandwidth to consumer over that time period though. Business accounted for 20% of the total global IP traffic per month in 2014, but that will dip to 18% in 2019 as consumer eats up that other 2%.

Video continues to whet that consumer appetite. Sixty-eight percent of consumer traffic will be comprised of HD and ultra HD Internet video by 2019, and video overall will account for 79% of all IP traffic in 2019, up from 66% in 2014.

Mobile connections will make up 67% of monthly IP traffic by 2019, with 53% coming from Wi-Fi. Fixed connections will account for 33% of overall traffic down from 54% in 2014. Back then, Wi-Fi was 42% and cellular 4% of monthly IP traffic.

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