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This is amazing. Ever-increasing download speeds, file sharing and the growing adoption of high quality online video are expected to lead to a surge of global IP traffic in the next few years. Cisco expects global traffic to almost quadruple between 2011 and 2016.

After file sharing had been the main contributor to global traffic for many years, online video is now the biggest data hog. Video (excluding video communication) is expected to account for 54 percent of global IP traffic. Web browsing and email only make up 13 percent of traffic, while voice over IP services and online gaming add less than one percent to the total.

This chart shows Cisco’s forecast of global monthly IP traffic from 2011 to 2016.