HTTP Traffic Surpasses P2P Traffic

Thanks to YouTube alone consuming some 10% of all internet traffic, P2P traffic is now down to only 36% of internet usage in North America.

After more than four years of P2P and file-sharing programs consuming the largest percentage of bandwidth on the network traffic in North America, HTTP, general web, traffic has overtaken P2P and continues to grow.

Due to the increasing demand for streaming audio and video in Web downloads, HTTP is now responsible for some 46% of all traffic. P2P continues as a strong second place at 37% of total traffic. Newsgroups at 9%, non-HTTP video streaming at 3%, gaming at 2%, and VoIP at 1% round out the list of application bandwidth usage.

It’s interesting to note how this news will hopefully change the mindset of ISPS in North America who have either already been throttling P2P traffic or were considering doing so since it was previously responsible for some 70% of all bandwidth usage.

Now, with online video streaming alone up 56% since last year, and the constant rise in the number of broadband and wi-fi connections making it possible, the amount of bandwidth usage attributed to HTTP traffic versus P2P traffic will only grow even greater.

Breaking down application types within HTTP, the data reveals that traditional Web page downloads (i.e.text and images) represent 45% of all Web traffic. Streaming video represents 36% and streaming audio 5% of all HTTP traffic. YouTube alone comprises approximately 20% of all HTTP traffic, or nearly 10% of all traffic on the Internet.

“The popularity of browser-based video such as YouTube is having a significant impact not only on overall bandwidth consumption but also on the distribution of application traffic on the network,” said Fred Sammartino, vice president of marketing and product management at Ellacoya. “The way people use the Internet is changing rapidly – from browsing to real-time streaming. We expect to see new applications over the next year that will accelerate this trend.”

Let’s see if this takes some of the doom and gloom out of predictions that file-sharing will overwhelm ISPs and instead point out that the "average" guy or people using legitimate streaming services and sites are the ones responsible for the most bandwidth consumption.