May 14, 2012


Businesses not ready for video influx, study finds

The heyday of enterprise video is just over the horizon, and though many companies are aware of this, relatively few have taken the necessary steps to prepare for it, according to a recent survey by Network Instruments.

The study, conducted at the Interop conference held last week in Las Vegas, found that companies recognize their video use is growing and putting increased pressure on the corporate network. According to the survey, video currently accounts for 29 percent of network bandwidth. Within 12 months, businesses believe that number will jump to 40 percent.

However, very few are doing anything about this anticipated growth. Network Instruments revealed that Interop attendees have allocated only 10 percent of their network capacity to video technologies, like an enterprise video platform or video content delivery solution.

“The significant increase in the use of video and corresponding rise in bandwidth consumption will hit networks like a tidal wave,” said Network Instruments product marketing manager Stephen Brown.

Businesses that fail to respond to this “tidal wave” are in for trouble. In recent years, video has become a central part of corporate meetings, employee engagement, training and more. If a company cannot ensure that video gets where it needs to go when it needs to get there, it risks annoying employees and eliminating the benefit of video to begin with. Therefore, companies must take certain steps to ensure they are using video as effectively as possible.

“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,” Brown added. “Without clear monitoring metrics and tools, it will be extremely difficult for IT to assess and ensure quality user experience.”

An earlier report from Seeking Alpha echoed the need for network adjustments in the age of enterprise video. Citing an IDC study, Seeking Alpha noted that video necessitates changes to the IT infrastructure, often in the form of data center upgrades. As video continues to grow, companies will need to find ways to support the increased strain put on the network and the WAN, as well as a way to handle larger storage requirements.