Network traffic will grow to new heights as services centre around individual users, Cisco chief executive John Chambers predicted in a keynote presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Chambers projected that 20 homes will generate as much network traffic by 2010 as the entire internet did in 1995.
This is because consumers will be able to watch TV over the internet, access their music on multiple devices via the network, or check on their home through a webcam from any remote location.
Personalised services demand that the network gains in intelligence because it needs to know an individual user's personal preferences. "When I look at this, I get excited. This is what gets a networking person excited," said Chambers.
But Chambers warned that to get to this so-called 'human network' service providers and consumer electronics manufacturers will have to make it much easier to access information from any device, regardless of the network.
"The question is how to hide this complexity though open standards and add value on top of it," said Chambers.
"How do you move this complexity into the network that allows you to develop applications at a much faster speed?
"How do you bring content to anybody who is authorised to see it, or generate
new services not in six to 12 months as a service provider, but literally over a
If these challenges are met, Chambers promised that manufacturers can expect an explosion of demand for new devices, services and connections.
He added that Cisco is best positioned to help parties to build these services because it has a proven track record in working with content producers, service providers, retailers and device manufactures through its Scientific Atlanta, Linksys and Cisco brands.
"When you think about Cisco, not only are we the Switzerland that most people trust as neutral and agnostic on these issues, we are a Switzerland with a very powerful army," said Chambers.
- A video report of Chambers illustrating the 'human network' is available on vnunet.com's CES Blog
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