The fifth annual Cisco® Global Cloud Index (2014-2019), released recently, forecasts that Middle East and Africa cloud traffic will more than quadruple by the end of 2019. Additionally, by 2019, 83 percent of all MEA data center traffic will come from the cloud.
From a regional perspective, the report found that MEA is expected to have the highest cloud traffic growth rate at 41 percent by 2019. Several factors are driving cloud traffic's accelerating growth and the transition to cloud services, including the personal cloud demands of an increasing number of mobile devices; the rapid growth in popularity of public cloud services for business, and the increased degree of virtualisation in private clouds which is increasing the density of those workloads. The growth of machine-to-machine (M2M) connections also has the potential to drive more cloud traffic in the future.
"The Cisco Cloud Index highlights the fact that cloud is moving well beyond a regional trend to becoming a mainstream solution, with cloud traffic expected to grow more than 30 percent in every worldwide region over the next five years. Middle East enterprise and government organisations are moving from test cloud environments to trusting clouds with their mission-critical workloads. At the same time, consumers continue to expect on-demand, anytime access to their content and services nearly everywhere. This creates a tremendous opportunity for cloud operators, which will play an increasingly relevant role in the communications industry ecosystem," Mike Weston, Vice President, Cisco Middle East.
In addition to the rapid growth of cloud traffic, Cisco predicts that the Internet of Everything (IoE)-the connection of people, processes, data and things-will have a significant impact on data center and cloud traffic growth. Today, only a small portion of this content is stored in data centers, but that could change as the application demand and uses of big data analytics evolves (i.e. analysing collected data to make tactical and strategic decisions).
New technologies such as SDN and NFV are also expected to streamline data center traffic flows, such that the traffic volumes reaching the highest tier (core) of the data center may fall below 10.4 ZB per year and lower data center tiers could carry over 40 ZB of traffic per year.