Cloud traffic to dominate data center traffic, says report

Staff writer
23 Oct 2013

Cisco is forecasting global cloud traffic, the fastest growing component of data center traffic, to grow 4.5-fold, or a 35% annually by 2017.

This translates to a combined annual growth rate (CAGR) from 1.2 zettabytes of annual traffic in 2012 to 5.3 zettabytes by 2017.

Overall global data center traffic will grow threefold and reach a total of 7.7 zettabytes annually by 2017, the company also said.

Approximately 17% of data center traffic will be fueled by end users accessing clouds for web surfing, video streaming, collaboration and connected devices, all of which contribute to the “Internet of Everything,” which is the networked connection of people, data, process and things.

Other data center traffic is not caused directly by end users, but by data centers and cloud-computing workloads used in activities that are virtually invisible to individuals.

For the period 2012 to 2017, Cisco forecasts that 7% of data center traffic will be generated between data centers, primarily driven by data replication and software/system updates.

An additional 76% of data center traffic will stay within the data center and will be largely generated by storage, production and development data in a virtualized environment.

From a regional perspective, the Cisco Global Cloud Index predicts that through 2017, the Middle East and Africa will have the highest cloud traffic growth rate (57% CAGR), followed by Asia Pacific (43% CAGR) and Central and Eastern Europe (36% CAGR).


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