Josephine Bernson
Our need for more and more bandwidth will be the focus in 2020, and there are no indications that this connectivity trend will subside over the next several years. After all, we’ve come to expect that data will be available at our fingertips, across all industries as well as throughout our everyday lives.

The IoT and potentially billions of connected smart devices are constantly sending in data. The rollout of 5G networking is just beginning. Industries are starting to implement solutions that leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning. The need for businesses to move gigabytes to terabytes or even petabytes of data at a fast rate will continue. There is no end in sight. The following connectivity needs and trends all tie back to the reality of bigger data and the corresponding demand for bandwidth.

#1: More Bandwidth Requires Latency, Scalability and Redundancy

The fundamental requirement to move higher and higher amounts of data through fast, reliable networking touches every public and private sector – the government, financial services, healthcare, education, nonprofits, private enterprises and more. More efficient routing and transport of data, voice and video and lower network latency will be important for quicker uploading and downloading of these large data files. To keep pace with increasing demand, network providers must be ready to scale up quickly. Network reliability and redundancy cannot be stressed enough.

#2: The Cloud and SD-WAN

The Cloud and SD-WAN are redefining bandwidth requirements. Today, most businesses, institutions and government agencies are considering migrating data to the cloud, whether it’s an on-premise cloud environment, a hybrid mode or a public cloud. They’re either thinking about it, talking about it, in the process of transitioning or have already made the move. SD-WAN or software-defined wide-area networks will simplify connecting enterprise networks spread over large geographic distances and facilitate the availability of the fast trove of enterprise data.

#3: Technology Connects the Government, Healthcare and Education

Connecting government offices over one network and enabling them with the fast and reliable bandwidth they need to ensure communication and sharing of information is a must for first responders, law enforcement, hospitals, schools, universities, courthouses and other government offices.

Healthcare providers will expand their use of telehealth. Video consultations provide the ability to reach patients in remote areas without the need for patients to travel. For example, remote monitoring is a way for patients to reduce the number of clinic visits to have a pacemaker checked. Patient medical information can be shared between hospitals and clinics for a more rapid diagnosis. Telemedicine will require more and more bandwidth and equipment as processes become more sophisticated.

Online learning is a reality that has transformed education. Students can learn in their own timeframe, from anywhere, by utilizing the Internet. Classes are largely video, with students uploading assignments for grades through cloud-based education programs. Online learning requires large amounts of data and high levels of network reliability and redundancy. After all, when assignments are due, the sites can’t go down!

#4: The Economic Boost: Urban To Rural and Rural To Urban

The ability to have high-speed Internet and other communications services in smaller communities is an economic boon. Potentially lower property costs encourage larger companies to move to a rural area, which in turn can help revitalize a community’s economic development prospects. Jobs can be added, housing grows, and in turn, there is opportunity for more businesses to follow suit. Thanks to bandwidth technology, talented entrepreneurs can live in small communities and build a thriving online business. Bandwidth is a way to keep smaller communities alive.

#5: Bandwidth Hogs, video Streaming Services

Another high bandwidth trend is the ongoing expansion of video as an industry. Video is key for home entertainment, business communication, education, and more. YouTube is widely viewed as the second most popular social media platform and TikTok is another social media video app that’s gaining in popularity. Video requires a large amount of bandwidth and as video continues to grow in quality, popularity and varied uses, the need for higher amounts of bandwidth to transport becomes a reality.

#6: Big Data

Higher bandwidth enables so-called “Big Data” analytics, where massive volumes of both structured and unstructured data can be analyzed to extract information and uncover patterns, trends and associations. From discovering customer behavior and buying patterns to advancing cancer research and tailoring treatment strategies to a patient’s unique genetic makeup, big data analytics tools can extract actionable intelligence that was previously unattainable.

These noteworthy technology trends link to the higher and higher volume of data being consumed, and that will continue to grow every day. What does the future hold? An ongoing, ever-increasing need for bandwidth capable of handling all of this data.