VNI Service Adoption Forecast

Cisco Visual Networking Index Service Adoption Forecast 2014–2019 Q&A

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May, 2015

Q.    What is the Cisco Visual Networking Index (Cisco VNI ) Service Adoption Forecast, and what is the relevance of the data it provides?
A.     The Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast projects the global and regional adoption rates of select residential, consumer mobile, and business services and applications, as well as the underlying addressable markets (subscribers and users) and relevant devices and connections that support the projections. This study includes forward-looking estimates of the penetration rates for 24 select end-user applications and services in three primary user categories: residential, consumer mobile, and business.

Table 1 lists the 24 services by segment that are covered in this research.

Table 1.       Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast Categories and Services

Residential Services

Consumer Mobile Services

Business Services

Digital TV

Consumer Multimedia Message Service (MMS)

Room-based videoconferencing

Time-delayed TV

Consumer mobile email

Desktop videoconferencing

Video on demand (VoD)

Mobile gaming

Audio conferencing

Voice over IP (VoIP)

Mobile music

Web conferencing without video

Online gaming

Mobile video

Business IP telephony

Online music

Mobile social networking

Business mobile LBS

Online video

Consumer mobile location-based services (LBS)

Business mobile email

Social networking

Mobile commerce

Business mobile Short Message Service (SMS)


Q.    How does the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast relate to other Cisco thought-leadership programs?
A.     The Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast is closely aligned with the Cisco VNI fixed and mobile IP traffic forecasts, which focus on global network bandwidth consumption, and the Cisco Global Cloud Index (GCI), which forecasts cloud-based IP traffic growth. The service adoption and traffic studies are both based on the same global and regional estimates for population, network users and subscribers, and devices and connections.
Q.    What are the criteria for selecting the services included in the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast?
A.     The Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast focuses on services that have a bottom-line impact on the service provider networks, through their monetization potential, their network or infrastructure provisioning and maintenance cost implications, or through both monetization and costs. For all these services, service provider networks are key to delivery and to providing an optimal end-user experience, even though the applications or content might not be provided by the carrier. The selected services represent a range of end-user applications, from highly penetrated services, such as digital television and business short message service (SMS), to high-growth next-generation services, such as desktop video conferencing and mobile location-based services.
Q.    What methodology and data sources are used for the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast?
A.     The Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast follows a rigorous methodology to estimate and forecast advanced service and device adoption by end users around the world. The research makes use of a variety of data sources:

   Publicly available data from international and national institutions, such as the United Nations Department of Population, International Labor Organization (ILO), and World Bank

   Regulatory and government reports (Ministries of Information such as CNNIC,, ACMA, and OfCom)

   Independent research and survey data from experienced research firms such as IDC, IHS, Gartner, Machina Research, Media Partners Asia, IHS/Screen Digest, Strategy Analytics, SNL Kagan, comScore, Ovum, and Wainhouse Research.

Cisco VNI analysts have developed and applied extensive data modeling techniques to analyze both supply‑side data, such as shipments of technology products, and demand-side data, such as user adoption and preferences. This approach provides a consistent and reliable means for predicting how global and regional populations, addressable markets, devices and connections, and service adoption rates will grow over the forecast period.

The Cisco VNI SA Forecast begins with estimates of total population, households, and workers, globally and for six regions (North America, Latin America, Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific), as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1.     Cisco VNI SA Forecast Parameters: Outside-In Approach


Next, analysts identify global and regional addressable markets for each of the following primary user categories:

   Residential (TV households and fixed Internet users)

   Consumer mobile (mobile subscribers)

   Business (business Internet users and business mobile subscribers)


Finally, analysts forecast the penetration rates of 24 specific services and applications globally and regionally in the context of the applicable population and addressable market parameters. Table 1 lists the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast categories and services.

Q.    Why does the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast include devices and connections forecast data?
A.     An important influence on services adoption is the global proliferation of devices and connections across mobile and fixed networks, as well as across consumer and business segments. Providing devices and connections forecast data helps promote the understanding of market trends that influence services adoption growth.
Q.    Were any changes made to the basic assumptions or significant service adoption influences in the latest forecast update?
A.     The forecast itself was updated and the numbers revised based on the latest research data available, such as increases in mobile consumer location-based services (LBS) users, particularly due to higher than previously expected adoption in regions such as Asia. However, no changes in basic assumptions or categorization were made this year.
Q.    What other Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast resources are available?
A.     A number of tools are available for exploring Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast data in more detail. These include:

   Highlights tool: Learn more about the main population, service adoption, and device trends across regions.

   Graphing tool: Create custom visualizations of Cisco VNI Service Adoption data to export for articles and reports.

   Infographics: Review content depicting global and regional services adoption, as well as devices and connections data.

   Services gauge: Compare the bandwidth requirements of select advanced services.

   Case studies: See how global service providers are delivering innovative services in their unique markets.


Further details of service adoption trends across the three segments of residential, consumer mobile, and business are included in the consolidated VNI whitepaper, The Zettabyte Era—Trends and Analysis.

Q.    Can my organization or I use or publish Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast data?
A.     Yes. Cisco welcomes and encourages press, analysts, service providers, regulators, and other interested parties, whether business or academic, to use and refer to our research. We do require that proper Cisco attribution be given for any and all Cisco VNI data that is published or shared in private or public print and electronic forms (for example, Source: Cisco Visual Networking Index [or VNI] Forecast, 2014–2019).
Q.    How can I ask questions about the Cisco VNI Service Adoption Forecast?
A.     Please send any questions to