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Cisco study predicts wearables will cause huge spike in mobile traffic

We’re hearing a lot about how wearables are set to explode before this decade is out – not literally explode (well hopefully not – though there’s bound to be some sort of incident like that at some point, if smartphones are anything to go by), but rather to explode in terms of their numbers.

And Cisco has released another report which points to big numbers of wearables before 2020 arrives.

This is the company’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) study, which is performed twice a year and scrutinises levels of fixed and mobile data traffic.

The research estimated that there will be eight billion connected mobile devices come 2019, and 3.2 billion – 40 per cent – will be machine-to-machine connections, including wearables.

From this year to 2019, Cisco reckons we will see mobile traffic from wearables increase by a factor of 18 – with most of that traffic happening via the user’s smartphone, which the wearable is hooked up to. And of course, all that bandwidth has to be catered for by network providers…

The total number of connected things (this is the rapidly expanding Internet of Things, of course) is expected to hit 50 billion by 2020.

In terms of these rapidly increasing levels of traffic, Cisco observes: “2015 could well be the year corporate, service provider and public sector networks start feeling the pressure.”

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.