Please Ignore That Sucking Sound…

May 22, 2009
3 minutes

It is merely the bandwidth being consumed by video (and photo) application usage. A somewhat random factoid posted on stated that every minute, 20 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube. Think about that. There are 1,440 minutes in a day, which equates to 2,880 hours of video. It is a remarkable statistic, given that YouTube videos are not full featured films or TV shows.

The YouTube statistic combined with a recent Nielsen report confirms that users, at home or at work, are using the Internet to entertain themselves. The Nielsen report shows that the hours of Internet video watched, at home and at work, is up 53.2% to just about 3 hours per month.

The one thing that neither of these statistics looked at specifically was the use of video/photo applications within the enterprise. During our own analysis summarized in the Application Usage and Risk Report, guess which application consumed the highest amount of bandwidth? You guessed it. YouTube gobbled up nearly gig of bandwidth.


Delving more deeply into the video application findings within the report shows the following:
* A sizable 4.4 terabytes of bandwidth was consumed by video applications alone, nearly double the amount observed in the previous report (2.3 terabytes).
* There were 44 different photo/video applications found – up from 30 detected in the previous report.
* The underlying technology used is primarily browser-based (24) with p2p and client/server powering 10 applications each.

To a certain extent, these enterprise specific statistics support the findings mentioned earlier in this post – video use and the corresponding bandwidth consumption is up.

Before the naysayers jump on me and say employees should be allowed to do what they want, let’s be perfectly clear here – no one is saying we should block these applications. The decision on what to do with these applications is left entirely to the corporations. In nearly every case, our customers felt their bandwidth was being consumed by non-business applications but were unsure which ones. Now they know which are the heaviest consumers – both in terms of applications and users. Some customers are hardnosed about it, blocking the use, others are merely collecting data while others are re-writing their policies, allowing the use but scanning for threats. In one case, the applications were blocked and user backlash was such that management bought a bigger pipe, allowing use but adding control elements around it.

The bottom line is that now the customers know that a big chunk of that sucking sound is video oriented.

Thx for reading.

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