Net gains


Our theme today seems to be all Ben Worthen, all the time...but he's got some pretty pictures that reinforce one of my favorite ideas: the interwebs aren't grinding to a halt, because the folks who run them keep upgrading the infrastructure.

Previously: Henk Steenman, chief technology officer at AMS-IX, does have more data. He states flatly that the key European hub "will definitely have no problem with capacity for 2007 or 2008. We've seen 100 percent increases in traffic each year since 1997, and coped with it. A hundred percent a year is nothing special, and I've seen no indications it will grow faster than that." Other hubs should be able to handle rapid growth, too, says Ken Cheng, vice president and general manager of the High Value Systems business unit at Foundry Networks Inc. in Santa Clara, Calif., which sells heavy-duty switching and routing equipment. "It's the same at Internet exchange points on every continent. I'm certain they will be able to handle the load," Cheng says.

Eric Schoonover, a senior analyst with Washington, D.C.-based market research firm TeleGeography, agrees. "There's nothing all that alarming going on," he says. "This whole idea that the increase in traffic is going to break something or kill something, or the providers won't keep up, seems foolhardy to me." Video traffic and demand growth have been accounted for, he says, and "the network operators know how to scale." TeleGeography research shows average global utilization of core Internet capacity in mid-2006 was only 34 percent, with peak utilization of 47 percent of available capacity.


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