Global internet capacity up 35% in 2020

17 February 2021 | Melanie Mingas

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International internet capacity saw growth of 35% in 2020, according to new figures published by TeleGeography.

In fact, the internet saw capacity grow from "around 450 Tbps to over 600 Tbps" between 2019 and 2020. Meanwhile on traffic, a peak traffic growth rate of 28% was forecast for 2019 to 2020, however the observed level for the same period actually reached 47%.

These figures followed reports earlier in the month that confirmed DE-CIX saw a total of 32 exabytes of data traffic flow through global IXs in 2020. In the UK, Linx, the London Internet Exchange, said traffic on its main platform has gone up by 40% in the year of Covid-19.

Meanwhile, NetIX has set a new record for peak data throughput, achieving 1Tbps of peak data traffic on the evening of 3 February, the day before its inaugural members’ meeting, NetIX 1.0.

 "It’s been very interesting to track global trends in terms of capacity and traffic over the past year, and learning how operators responded to the pandemic," said Anahí Rebatta, senior analyst at TeleGeography.

"Our latest data shows that global capacity and internet traffic surged in 2020, mostly driven by the widespread remote work and learning, with more people relying on the internet than ever before."

The figures were released alongside TeleGeography’s 2021 Global Internet Map (promo pictured) sponsored by Netskope.

Rebatta continued: "It’s a great feeling to release a new map and share all of these insights with the industry. And this year we're layering in even more cloud infrastructure data, including six new cloud service provider maps showing active and planned cloud regions, number of availability zones, and on-ramps."

The map also included the aggregate number of IXs in each country and the number deployed by region over the past five years. Key projections cover intraregional internet bandwidth, metro-to-metro area internet bandwidth, metro area internet bandwidth and the top 50 metro areas ranked.

Among the key insights, the map demonstrated:

  • Europe is the region with the highest regional capacity, and has also seen the largest growth from 2019 to 2020.
  • Peak international internet traffic increased at a compound annual rate of 30% between 2016 and 2020.
  • Average international internet traffic increased from around 120 Tbps to 170 Tbps from 2019 to 2020.

 

Joe DePalo, SVP of platform engineering at Netskope, said: "We believe a secure and safe internet supports long-term growth and innovation. The disruptions the world saw in 2020 showed the mission-critical nature of the internet and the value it delivers to both businesses and people.

“Visibility and insights are vital components of any digital transformation journey, and through the sponsorship of this map we aim to help more businesses respond to global trends and secure their networks,” DePalo added.