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Study: Google accounts for 25 percent of all Internet traffic

Zach Miners | July 23, 2013
The diversified range of new products being built and provided by Google now make the company accountable for nearly 25 percent of all Internet traffic, up from a mere 6 percent just three years ago, according to a new study.

Global presence
The rise in Google's presence online is strongly linked with the deployment of thousands of Google servers in Internet providers around the world, Deepfield said.

Growth of the company's Google Global Cache (GGC) dedicated server program in the U.S. in particular is an important factor in the trends-Deepfield's last large-scale study in 2010 only revealed GGC deployments mostly in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Google's GGC program is designed to let network operators and Internet service providers deploy a small number of Google servers inside their network to serve popular Google content, like YouTube, Google explains on its website.

"GGC can be located anywhere in an operator's network to maximize savings in backbone and transit bandwidth," Google says. While rates vary depending on the unique consumption patterns of each operator's network, typically between 70 percent and 90 percent of Google cacheable traffic can be served from GGC, the company claims.

Google operates data centers in South Carolina, Iowa, Georgia, Oklahoma, North Carolina and Oregon.

Deepfield's results are based on an ongoing analysis of anonymized Internet backbone traffic across a large cross section of North America and multiple collaborating infrastructure and Internet providers.

The group's findings, however, may be a tad high, said Brad Casemore, an industry analyst with IDC. "I suspect the numbers are not an entirely accurate representation of Google's proportion of Internet traffic," he said. However, "that is not to say that Google and other hyper-scale cloud purveyors are not accounting for a growing percentage of Internet traffic," he added.

"As consumers, startups, small businesses, and enterprises of all sizes increasingly leverage cloud services, from Google and from other hyper-scale players, we can expect these entities to account for a growing percentage of overall Internet traffic, though the exact proportion at any given moment will be difficult to ascertain," Casemore said.

 

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