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Internet Use To Surge in Middle East And Africa by 2016

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(Image: Flavio Takemoto)
(Image: Flavio Takemoto)


  • Fastest growing internet traffic in Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific
  • Popularity of smartphones, internet-based tablets and other mobile technology devices driving surge in usage
  • Wi-Fi availability will account for nearly half of all IP traffic by 2016

Cisco Systems’ Visual Networking Index (VNI), which analyzes the growth and use of IP networks worldwide, predicts that internet traffic will grow at a rate of 29%, with nearly 19 billion total global mobile and fixed network connections by 2016. 

In a recent statement, Cisco said: “The projected increase of global IP traffic between 2015 and 2016 alone is more than 330 exabytes, which is almost equal to the total amount of global IP traffic generated in 2011 (369 exabytes).”

According to Cisco, some of the most impressive internet usage will come from outside the US; while North America is expected to see an annual growth rate of approximately 2% (or 269 million users), the Middle East and Africa as well as Asia Pacific will see compound annual growth rates reaching as much as 16% and 13%, respectively.

Latin America follows closely behind at 11%, with Central/Eastern Europe at nearly 8%. Western Europe holds around 3%, making up the rest of the traffic.

What Is Behind The Increase?

Many factors contribute to this unprecedented surge in internet usage, including the rise in popularity of smartphones, internet-based tablets and other mobile technology devices.

Additional factors driving the online traffic frenzy include a rise in Wi-Fi availability, faster broadband speeds, increased video usage and simply more internet users in general.

More specifically, statistics extrapolated from Cisco’s findings show that by the year 2016: Wi-Fi availability will account for nearly half of all IP traffic; broadband speeds should have quadrupled; every second 1.2 million minutes of video content will cross the network; and approximately 45% of the anticipated population of the entire world will use the internet.

Key Statistics - Internet Protocol Industry

  • Primarily due to automatic IP allocation, the Global Internet Protocol Address Management will reach nearly $2 billion by 2014 (source: TechNavio).
  • By 2015, the global IP Private Branch Exchange is predicted to reach $9.1 billion as a result of increased interest in an otherwise lesser used telecommunication (source: Global Industry Analysts).
  • Between 2011 and 2015, the Global Internet Protocol Television Services market is expected to see a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of over 22%.

By Laurie Juliano-Bachara for
Laurie Juliano-Bachara is a Chicago-based writer who covers the latest topics in professional services, entertainment and business news.

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