Traffic growth between the US and Latin America grew 112 percent between mid-2007 and mid-2008, far exceeding the growth rate seen in other global markets, according to new data from the telecom research firm TeleGeography. Total international Internet traffic grew 53 percent during the same period, compared to 61 percent growth the previous year.
That growth may explain why Google is planning a data center in Miami, a key connectivity gateway to Latin American markets. That project is part of a broader focus on international expansion by the search giant, which is also investing in undersea fiber capacity and scouting data center sites in Asia.
Here's an interesting data nugget from the TeleGeography report: for the second consecutive year, total international Internet capacity grew faster than total Internet traffic. As a result, between 2007 and 2008 the average traffic utilization levels decreased from 31 percent to 29 percent, while peak utilization fell from 44 percent to 43 percent. Utilization rose slightly in the U.S., Canada and Latin America, while declining in Europe and Asia, TeleGeography said.
"Broadband subscriber growth has been slowing since 2001, but the volume of traffic generated by each user grown," said TeleGeography Director of Research Alan Mauldin. "Traffic growth is fueled by consumer demand for video, delivered via web browsers, peer-to-peer services, or streaming protocols."