August 9, 2022

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Comcast: Web site visitors grew 11% in 2021 over pandemic-driven highs of 2020

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Comcast mentioned web site visitors on its cable modem community grew 11% in 2021 in comparison to the historical expansion yr of 2020.

In 2020, the pandemic pressured other folks into lockdown, drove them to on-line leisure reminiscent of streaming and on-line video games, and made them paintings or move to college by the use of the web. As lockdowns lifted fairly in 2021, it will were anticipated that site visitors would decline however as a substitute the expansion persevered, mentioned Elad Nafshi, leader community officer at Comcast Cable, in an interview with GamesBeat. In 2020, community site visitors grew 32%.

“We idea that once 2020 expansion, we puzzled if it may possibly in reality move any upper. And the solution is, sure, it may possibly via 11%,” Nafshi mentioned. “It’s the superb nature of the web that, even with all of this expansion and the capability that we’ve added in 2020. We proceed to peer important expansion.”

Video games constituted about 11% of all downstream site visitors, Comcast mentioned. That is sensible as giant recreation downloads frequently ship gigabytes of knowledge to avid gamers’ house consoles or PCs. However ongoing gaming operations reminiscent of working on-line video games or importing livestreams don’t require as a lot knowledge, Nafshi mentioned. By way of comparability, video used to be 71% of site visitors.

Comcast’s community file spells out how a lot the web is rising.

He famous that once a brand new Name of Responsibility comes out and the patches for updates pop out, that ends up in the downloading of huge recordsdata.

Nonetheless, he added, “Video continues to be the king as video nonetheless drives a large number of the downstream intake. Whilst you consider video, it doesn’t get larger simply when extra other folks watch extra video. It’s also that the video will get larger” as extra other folks undertake 4K and even higher TVs or cell units.

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Comcast mentioned that utilization did shift again towards pre-pandemic ranges for some customers, however general the community persevered to develop.

Comcast mentioned it make investments $4.2 billion in its community in 2021 and greater than $30 billion over the last decade. That implies that it invested upper than moderate numbers up to now yr, thank you in no small section to the upper call for. Comcast lifted its most sensible tier of provider from 1 gigabit according to 2d to one.2 gigabits according to 2d, and it’s creating era to boost the rate to ten gigabits a 2d over the years.

“We proceed to make important investments into the community and so we’re not at all resting on our laurels,” Nafshi mentioned. “Comcast has made important investments into the community over the past 10 years and 2021 used to be no other. The investments that we’re making aren’t simply in sheer capability, but in addition within the degree of class and intelligence that we have got within the community.”

Comcast is the usage of AI and gadget studying to assist building up its capability and work out the place the bottlenecks are in its community.

The knowledge display a gentle shift all over the yr towards pre-pandemic site visitors patterns. This integrated height downstream site visitors as soon as once more expanding quicker than upstream site visitors, and height utilization instances transferring from previous within the day to later within the night time.

Comcast has tested 10G networks at download speeds of 4 gbps.
Comcast has examined 10G networks at obtain speeds of four gbps.

Top downstream (obtain) site visitors higher 11% over 2020 ranges, whilst height upstream (add) site visitors higher 5%. Whilst much less dramatic than the historical spikes of 2020 – when height downstream site visitors rose 38% and upstream site visitors grew 56% – it’s noteworthy that call for persevered to extend even from historical 2020 highs.

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2021 at a look:

— Site visitors patterns remained extremely asymmetrical, as height downstream site visitors grew two instances quicker than upstream site visitors, extra intently mirroring pre-pandemic developments.
— Community asymmetry higher all over the yr, with general downstream site visitors volumes 12.4 instances upper than upstream for the primary six months of the yr, and 14.5 instances upper for the remaining six months.
— Day-to-day height instances shifted towards pre-pandemic norms all over the yr – height upstream site visitors instances have been 10 a.m. in January, 3 p.m. in June, and 10 p.m. in December.
— Streaming, internet surfing, and gaming all noticed the biggest will increase in community intake with a ten% to twenty% building up for all 3 classes.
— Very similar to remaining yr, leisure actions ruled height community site visitors, with video streaming accounting for 71% of downstream site visitors (similar as 2020).
— Different actions that contributed to height downstream site visitors come with each on-line gaming and internet surfing which each higher their percentage of community utilization via 1 proportion level over 2020 ranges.
— Videoconferencing as a percentage of height community site visitors reduced fairly in 2021, closing not up to 5%.

Nafshi mentioned in previous interviews that the corporate frequently builds its community with expansion in thoughts, in order that it may possibly care for surges in site visitors. And lately he mentioned Comcast continues to do the paintings of future-proofing the community in anticipation of destiny call for.

Along with good instrument and virtualization applied sciences that building up efficiency and reliability, Comcast took primary steps in 2021 towards 10G, which is able to permit Comcast to ship multi-gigabit add and obtain speeds over the connections already in tens of thousands and thousands of American houses. In 2021, Comcast finished a hit assessments of key applied sciences required to ship 10G, together with a world-first demonstration of an entire 10G connection from community to modem.

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“We by no means took our foot off the gasoline,” Nafshi mentioned. “The corporate will proceed to take a position closely in ensuring that the community will all the time be there for our shoppers and all the time have all of the capability we want for expansion.”

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