Australian mobile data traffic is set to experience a compound annual growth rate of 43 per cent between now and 2017 as more people get access to 4G networks, according to Cisco.
Speaking at the Cisco Live conference in Melbourne, the vendor’s global technology policy vice-president Robert Pepper shared results from its Visual Networking Index 2012.
“There are four drivers for data consumption growth across the networks. There are more users, more devices per user, faster network speeds and more media rich content,” he said.
According to Pepper, local mobile data traffic will hit 0.075 exabytes within the next five years due to improved networks and more devices.
For example, the development of 4G networks in Australia meant that by 2017 19 per cent of mobile devices would use 4G while 77 per cent would be operating on 3G. In addition, the number of devices running on 2G networks was slated to decline from 19 per cent to 5 per cent.
Turning to Australian mobile data traffic growth by device, he said that the majority of data (38 per cent) would be consumed via smartphones by 2017. Laptops would account for 39 per cent of data traffic while tablets would make up 13.7 per cent.
According to the Index, smartphones will have a 51 per cent share of the total device market in Australia while machine to machine (M2M) devices over cellular networks will have a 28 per cent share.
Laptops are predicted to make up 13 per cent while tablets are slated to have a five per cent share.
“A lot of the M2M devices are going to be supply chain management, manufacturing and devices in people’s cars,” Pepper said.
This contrasted with Cisco’s global prediction that smartphones will make up two thirds of the devices used for data consumption while laptops would only make up 14 per cent.
“This is an important shift because in large portions of the world, people’s primary device to connect to the Internet is the smartphone,” he said.
“In Australia what we are seeing is a dramatic shift to smartphones but laptops connected to dongles will make up 39 per cent of traffic and smartphones approximately 38 per cent.”
Hamish Barwick travelled to Cisco Live in Melbourne as a guest of Cisco
Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick