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Bandwidth consumption is growing at a pretty amazing rate as we utilise the Internet’s protocol either publicly or privately more and more throughout our daily lives. Forecasters predict emerging trends such as M2M (machine to machine), the ‘Internet of Things’ and ‘wearable devices’ will fuel that ever increasing demand for bandwidth even further.

In its latest Visual Networking Index Forecast, Cisco predicts over 1.4 zettabytes of data will be flowing over global networks by 2017. It’s easy to see how this immense amount of data could be reached when you consider that, according to Nielsen’s law of Internet Bandwidth, users’ bandwidth grows by 50% per year (10% less than Moore’s Law) and Cisco predicts around 3.6 billion people are expected to be online by 2017 (up from 2.3 billion currently).

So what is a zettabyte?

A zettabyte is equal to 1.1 trillion gigabytes, which is approximately 1021 or 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes! That’s obviously quite hard to visualise but we think this infographic describes it quite nicely!

What is a zettabyte

So what does all this mean for the channel?

Well, it’s good news! Emerging technologies are driving our demand for and our reliance on connectivity services both at home and at work. As always, we want more and more and we want it faster and faster, which is generating some fantastic opportunities for resellers who are able to provide faster, higher bandwidth broadband services and benefit from a growing number of higher value solutions such as Ethernet. Plus, according to these predictions that trend is set to stay for the foreseeable future.

Of course it does mean that you need to make sure you work with a wholesale supplier that can keep up with the increasing demands. Does your supplier have a future-proof network with the capacity to satisfy your customers’ predicted usage? Do they have an investment plan in place to keep up with these trends? We do and you can find out more about them by reading our article.

Have your say!

Do you think the rise in global data will help to generate ongoing opportunities for the channel? Are you already seeing a rise in customers requiring more and more bandwidth due to uptake of new trends such as ‘connected devices’? Share your experiences and predictions by leaving us a comment below.

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