Are you investing in cloud technology? You’re not alone.

According to the latest Global Cloud Index from Cisco Systems Inc., data centre traffic over the next five years will nearly triple, with cloud representing 76 per cent of that.

In fact, global cloud traffic is growing faster than the overall data centre traffic — perhaps thanks to all those YouTube and Twitter users. In 2013 cloud accounted for 54 per cent of global data centre traffic, the report says. By 2018 cloud will account for 76 per cent of total data centre traffic.

Still. the study says that 70 per cent of that traffic will be private cloud-related.

Cisco uses the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) definition of cloud computing.

The report “confirms that cloud infrastructure is definately usurping the traditional data centre,” Thomas Barnett, director of thought leadership for Cisco’s service provider marketing group, said in an interview.

How much data are we pouring through data centres? By 2018, 8.6 zettabytes a year (a zettabyte is a trillion gigabytes). It’s growing at a compound annual rate of 3 per cent.

For the purpose of the report, this includes traffic that runs with data centres, traffic that runs to end users and data centre-to data centre traffic.

The report also says the number of countries deemed “cloud ready” (a figure Cisco creates by looking at average and median download/upload speeds and latencies on fixed and mobile networks) is now 109, up from 79 last year.

Canada didn’t figure in the top of either list. The countries with the leading fixed network performance in 2014 are Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Romania, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland and Taiwan.

 The countries with the leading mobile network performance in 2014 are Australia, Belgium, China, Denmark, Korea, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Oman, Qatar and Uruguay.

By Cisco’s calculations,  Canada’s fixed business and consumer networks have an average latency  of 43 ms. By comparison Hong Kong networks have an average of 30 ms latency (smaller is better). Both have near identical  average download speeds of just over 51,400 kbps.

Our mobile networks, Canada has average download speeds of 11,957 with 99 ms of latency. By comparison Australia has average download speeds of 17,339 with 67 ms average latency.

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