P2P Filesharing Drops Below 10% of Fixed Network Data

  • Sandvine
WATERLOO, ONTARIO – Peer-to-peer filesharing has fallen below 10 percent of total Internet traffic in North America, according to Sandvine, a provider of intelligent broadband network solutions for fixed and mobile operators, in its Internet traffic trends report, entitled “Global Internet Phenomena Report 2H2013”.

“For the first time ever, peer-to-peer filesharing has fallen below 10 percent of total traffic in North America, which is a stark difference from the 60 percent share it consumed 11 years ago,” said Dave Caputo, CEO, Sandvine. “Since 2009 on-demand entertainment has consumed more bandwidth than “experience later” applications like peer-to-peer filesharing and we had projected it would inevitably dip below 10 percent of total traffic by 2015. It’s happened much faster.”

Findings in the report include:

  • Average monthly mobile usage in Asia-Pacific now exceeds 1 gigabyte, driven by video, which accounts for 50 percent of peak downstream traffic. This is more than double the 443 megabyte monthly average in North America.

  • In Europe, Netflix, less than two years since launch, now accounts for over 20 percent of downstream traffic on certain fixed networks in the British Isles. It took almost four years for Netflix to achieve 20 percent of data traffic in the United States.

  • Instagram and Dropbox are now top-ranked applications in many regions across the globe. In mobile networks in Latin America, Instagram, due to the recent addition of video, is now the seventh top ranked downstream application, making it a prime candidate for inclusion in tiered data plans which are popular in the region.

  • Netflix (31.6 percent) holds its ground as the leading downstream application in North America and together with YouTube (18.6 percent) accounts for over 50 percent of downstream traffic on fixed networks.

  • P2P Filesharing now accounts for less than 10 percent of total daily traffic in North America. Five years ago it accounted for over 31 percent.

  • Video accounts for less than 6 percent of traffic in mobile networks in Africa, but is expected to grow faster than in any other region before it. Blackberry email and BBM messaging accounts for over 13 percent of traffic across the continent.


“The African market is especially unique," added Caputo, "as most users are connecting to the Internet for the first time through mobile devices, and using applications like Skype, Facebook and WhatsApp. In other parts of the world, new users have first connected to the Internet via a fixed line. While video is a small part of mobile bandwidth in the region today, we predict Africa will be the fastest video adopter and operators will respond with creative device-and application-based service tiers.”

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