According to Infonetics Research, the global carrier Ethernet equipment market fell 3 percent (to $34 billion) in 2012, following a 13-percent spike in 2011. However, the group predicts slow but steady growth during the next five years, reaching about $39 billion in 2017. Spending on IP edge routers totaled $9.4 billion last year, the most of any carrier Ethernet equipment segment. "Carrier Ethernet is now a permanent, inseparable part of service provider networks, and the market has reached a steady state of investment as a result," notes Michael Howard, principal analyst/Carrier Networks and company co-founder. "Though spending on legacy technologies like SONET/SDH and WDM will decline, investment in IP routers, carrier Ethernet switches and Ethernet access devices will continue to rise, driven by the move to IP NGN and, of course, growing traffic — particularly video traffic."