The other day I read a startling fact from Cisco - The Number Of Mobile-Connected Devices Will Exceed the World’s Population this year…wow!
Related to this, Cisco also claims that in 2011, mobile data traffic was 8 times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000..!
The mobile web’s growth and its unending need for more data, more connectivity and more bandwidth, shows no signs of slowing.
The devices themselves are driving this growth, with smartphones that are capable of doing more, a lot faster and of course the rise of the tablet. Another fact from Cisco – by 2016, mobile-connected tablets will generate almost as much traffic as the entire global mobile network does in 2012!
However the key growth driver comes from the fact that increases in mobile connectivity have allowed mobile devices to function as tools for media consumption. By 2016, video will represent over 70% of mobile traffic – think of hugely popular YouTube and Netflix etc, but we also can’t get enough of downloading music (eg Pandora, Spotify), gaming, or social networking apps, to our mobile devices. A smartphone owner who uses Netflix, Pandora and Facebook will generate more than twice the volume of traffic as generated by a smartphone owner only using email and web apps….
This explosion in mobile data traffic is having a significant impact on the hotel industry and causing sleepless nights for IT managers who are having to deal with the reality of providing adequate bandwidth to support it.
The ‘BYOD’ (Bring Your Own Device) trend is creating a new generation of guests who are carrying 3-4 personal mobile devices to access both work and entertainment content –a growing proportion of this is streamed music and video – and guests simply expect to have the bandwidth on tap in the hotel to support it.
It is vital for hotels to have a strategic partner who can support them 24/7 in managing these fluctuating bandwidth demands, providing them with the appropriate levels of connectivity to underpin their guests’ growing Internet demands, identifying the different Internet traffic profiles – and proactively managing the bandwidth pipes to ensure optimum efficiency for the hotel and service quality for guests.
Bandwidth management takes on many forms such as speed capping (i.e. setting bandwidth limits on a per guest/user basis) or by setting priorities according to the hotel’s requirements (e.g. giving priority to premium paying guests’ Internet usage such as business travellers). Taking a proactive stance to identify and manage guests’ Internet traffic, enables hotels to not only manage the traffic for today but dimension accordingly to meet the anticipated increasing trends in usage.
This is a major challenge for hotels – What is your experience? I would really like to hear your comments… Myself and members of the QNetworks team will be at Hitec 2012 (booth 2428) next week in Baltimore and would welcome the opportunity to discuss how we could help you to address any of your concerns…