Video will extend bandwidth needs, says Cisco’s Chambers

Two-fold hike in demand predicted

During his keynote speech AT the Cisco Networkers 2006 conference, the company’s chief executive, John Chambers, predicted that there will be a 200% increase in workloads on corporate networks over the next two years because of increased use of video technology.

Chambers demonstrated how video of a baseball game could be captured from an IP network and viewed on room-size high-definition TVs. Companies will be able to use the same “telepresence” capabilities for meetings, telemedicine and other uses, he noted. Later this year, Cisco plans to announce more details about new technology that will support video applications, according to a company spokesman.

How soon the vision sketched by Chambers will fully materialise was a matter of debate at the conference.Yankee Group analyst Zeus Kerravala said that the telepresence concept might not be widely adopted by corporate users for at least five years.

Others at the conference were also unsure how Chambers’ vision will play out. Brandon Buffin, a systems administrator, said, “I’m using some video now, but [200%] is quite an increase in bandwidth, and that’s hard to imagine.”

However, David Siles, chief technology officer for the government of Kane County, Illinois, said he recently received requests from police officers who want to transmit live video and stored clips over wired and wireless connections. That would allow officers at the scene of a crime to transmit images to supervisors in other locations or to other first responders.

Kane County, which is located west of Chicago, is also contemplating the installation of a mesh wireless network, that could be built within two years, to help enable the transmission of video images. In addition, some taxpayers are interested in having video-streams of county board meetings available for playback on demand, Siles said.

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