Video Traffic is Moving from "North-South" to "East-West"

A recent Bell Labs study forecasts total metro traffic will increase 560 percent by 2017, largely driven by IP video and the increasing adoption of cloud/data center services and applications.


IP video and data center (DC)/cloud traffic are the largest drivers for growth. According to the study, metro video traffic (including subscription TV and Internet video) will increase 720 percent.


Metro cloud and data center traffic will increase 440 percent by 2017, the study predicts.


As the demand for video content increases, video caching is now being implemented within metro networks, moving content caching deeper into the network.


As a direct consequence, traffic between data centers in metro areas will grow, keeping much traffic off the backbone networks. That’s a significant change.


Until recently, metro traffic had a “north-south” flow from a content source to the end user with content sources typically located at a national central location and delivered over the wide area
backbone network.


But there is a change coming, Alcatel-Lucent says. The north-south flows increasingly will be replaced by “east-west traffic  flows for traffic flows from data center to data center, increasingly located within metro centers.

There are revenue implications for providers of high-capacity metro networks.
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