What's the status of global Internet traffic? Growing in both usage and capacity and coming down in price, according to TeleGeography's (News - Alert) Global Internet Geography study. The study is a comprehensive source of data and analysis about international Internet capacity, traffic, service providers and pricing. It measures the market for international Internet services, broken out by region, each year.
The newest report has yielded some interesting results and painted a broad picture of international Internet traffic. This year's study has also highlighted some surprises when the data are broken out by geography.
Overall global Internet traffic rose 56 percent in 2010; however, capacity grew to handle the traffic. Carriers added 13.2 Tbps of new international Internet capacity. Network utilization remained stable.
Some interesting data from the study:
Peak utilization on intra-Asian links are 50 percent higher than on intra-European links.
Trans-Pacific traffic peak utilization in 2009 grew to match intra-Asian traffic after lagging behind it from 2005 to 2008.
Trans-Atlantic traffic has now grown to third highest, having overtaken U.S.- Latin American traffic between 2007 and 2008.
Internet traffic in Africa has grown, but still lags very far behind the rest of the world. All of Africa combined had about one-third as much international Internet connectivity as as a small European nation (Austria was used an an example in the executive summary.)
In terms of market concentration, the five largest carriers in Asia account for only 37 percent of Asian bandwidth.
In Latin America, the five largest carriers own and operate 77 percent of those countries' international bandwidth.
Prices are going down across the board, regardless of where they started. Wholesale IP transit prices in major U.S. And European cities are the lowest in the world, yet they continue to fall at as rapid a rate as formerly higher-priced Asian and Latin American cities.
The full report can be accessed (for sale) at
Tracey Schelmetic is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Tracey's articles, please visit her columnist page.