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Mobile Video About to Invade Your Corporate Network

Handheld devices have been gaining more processing power and more functional visual displays. To date, those advances have not translated into much use of mobile video, however, that may soon change. Consequently network managers need to proactively plan for an upcoming influx of video traffic.
Handheld devices have been gaining more processing power and more functional visual displays. To date, those advances have not translated into much use of mobile video, however, that may soon change. Consequently network managers need to proactively plan for an upcoming influx of video traffic.Global IP Solutions (GIPS) hired telecom analyst firm Ovum to examine demand for real-time mobile video services in the U.S. In a report, the market research firm found that more than 50% of US wireless operators plan to launch, or increase access to, real-time video services during the next two years. To date, carriers have been slow to roll out video services, for instance only AT&T Wireless has thus far launched a video conferencing service. However, most carriers have been moving to deploy more video applications and should have the necessary infrastructure in place in the coming months.

Video service are much more bandwidth intensive than data or even voice services. One challenge for carriers is making sure that the introduction of such services does not have a negative impact on the performance of existing applications, such as voice communications and email. The roll out of 3G and 4G wireless networks was designed to make their networks more capable of supporting such features. Carriers have been investing billions in these networks recently and seem better able to support high bandwidth applications, such as video.

For small and medium businesses, the change represents good news/bad news. Increasingly, many firms are relying on handheld devices for communications. The advent of video capabilities will enhance those communications. The bad news is businesses, just like the carriers, will need to manage their networks more effectively in order to ensure that the influx of high bandwidth applications does not have a negative impact on application performance. They will also have to do that during a time when firms are cutting back on expenses and trying to ride out the recent economic meltdown. So maintaining a balance among all of these different business drivers may be difficult as their network traffic continues to grow.

Editor's Choice
Sara Peters, Editor-in-Chief, InformationWeek / Network Computing
Pam Baker, Contributing Writer
James M. Connolly, Contributing Editor and Writer
Sara Peters, Editor-in-Chief, InformationWeek / Network Computing
Greg Douglass, Global Lead for Technology Strategy & Advisory, Accenture
Carrie Pallardy, Contributing Reporter