More than half of Interop attendees surveyed at last week’s gathering expect video-conferencing to consume 40 percent of their total network traffic within 12 months, while reserving only 10 percent of network capacity for video.

According to the sixth annual study released by Network Instruments, the onsite survey of 104 network engineers, IT managers and executives attending Interop found:

>> Video Pervades Enterprise: 83 percent have deployed some form of video conferencing. Approximately two-thirds of respondents have multiple deployments throughout their organization, including desktop video (83 percent), standard video conferencing (40 percent) and videophones (17 percent).

>> Dominant Video Vendors: Of the organizations using video conferencing, 44 percent use Microsoft solutions, followed by Cisco (36 percent) and Polycom (35 percent).

>> Bandwidth Surge: Video currently consumes 29 percent of network bandwidth. Respondents predict this will increase to 40 percent within the next year.

>> Insufficient Bandwidth Allocated: In spite of predicting a significant rise in video demand, respondents have reserved only 10 percent of their network capacity for video technologies.

>> Quality Metric Questions: Without clear consensus on specific metrics for monitoring video quality, respondents rely on a variety of metrics to assess video-conferencing quality, including latency (36 percent), packet loss (32 percent) and jitter (20 percent). A smaller number rely on Video MOS (8 percent).

>> Largest Video Challenges: In identifying the largest challenges to ensuring video-conferencing performance, 38 percent indicated the lack of monitoring tools and metrics, and 33 percent indicated allocating and monitoring bandwidth. This compared to 31 percent who had difficulties implementing and measuring quality of service (QoS).

"The significant increase in the use of video and corresponding rise in bandwidth consumption will hit networks like a tidal wave," notes Stephen Brown, product marketing manager at Network Instruments. "The rise in video has the potential to squeeze out other critical network traffic and degrade video quality due to the lack of network capacity. Without clear monitoring metrics and tools, it will be extremely difficult for IT to assess and ensure quality user experience."

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