Nearly every person these days has a smartphone. From the youngest members of the family, to the oldest. It won’t be a surprise when home phones are completely phased out, and smartphones will simply be called phones.
They Cisco Systems company made a press release (their annual event), giving their insight and overview as to how this traffic on mobile devices is going to affect us. Their report covers from 2014 to 2019, and the numbers that they are showing are downright staggering. They are predicting that mobile usage, data and traffic is going to increase over ten times what it currently is. What their research indicated is a little over 24 exabytes a month. Not sure what an Exabyte is? No surprise since it’s hardly ever used. An Exabyte (a single one) is exactly one billion gigabytes.
Now this consistent, if not persistent, growth can be attributed to many different factors after taking a close look at their numbers. Not only are they predicting that people will be owning more than one phone in the near future, but they assume that before 2020, nearly 70 percent of the world are going to be using mobile devices. That’s over 5.2 billion people! And even among that hefty number, you’ll see more that 4.5 billion of them with smartphones, while many are overlapping or only have standard feature phones. Of course, there’s even more to consider when you begin to throw in other mobile devices such as laptops that use wifi as well as tablets. The likelihood is that you’ll see more tablets than laptops, though.
Not only is this enormous growth in smartphones surprising, but it’s interesting as well. There is no doubt that they will be the main device not just for every household, but for every person. This is believed to happen even before 2020. Now, they tend to use significantly more data, so that’s where you’re going to see a majority of the traffic. One of the biggest culprits of data hogging will be video. It’s predicted to consume nearly 75% of the data seen in Cisco’s figures. Video streaming will be hitting an all time high as soon as 2018.
One of the most confounding things is not knowing how these are going to look. For so long we were obsessed with the idea that the smaller the phone, the better it is. Yet now, we are getting disturbingly close to nearly holding entire tablets to our ears. Devices that blur the line of phone and tablet have even been dubbed “phablets”! Once we were okay with something smaller than our palm but nearly as thick as a brick, but no longer. Phones are slowing reaching the same standards we hold to our televisions, even almost down to resolution size. They need to be bigger, but thinner. Our future will either take our mobile devices down a smaller, but thinner road, or eliminate the need for a physical device in your hands at all (example: Google glass). There are no limits to what the future holds!