Interestingly, this announcement arrived after an extensive study in which Cisco projected that global mobile data traffic is poised to explode in the next four years. In anticipation of mobile network traffic demands over the next four years, the company's study suggests that by 2016, monthly global mobile data traffic will surpass 10 exabytes, while over 100 million smart phone users will belong to the "gigabyte club" (over 1 GB per month).
Cisco sees the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the world's population by the end of this year, while the average mobile connection speed will surpass 1 Mbps in 2014. These are pretty remarkable statistics when one considers the challenges presented today from the likes of Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T) in terms of data restrictions.
But the more remarkable revelation is the idea that not only will mobile devices exceed 50% of all mobile data traffic, but Cisco projects that by the end of this year, the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the number of people on earth while mobile network connection speeds will increase 9-fold by 2016.
So clearly, evidence suggests that Cisco gets it. But remarkably, Wall Street does not -- at least not to the extent where investors understand that Cisco will likely grow commensurate to this explosion in demand for bandwidth, some of which will be sparked by its acquisition of NDS.Unlike its rivals Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and Dell (DELL), Cisco understands the future of data mobility. In fact, I will argue that it understands it appreciably better than both Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOG). The fact of the matter is, although Apple is growing by leaps and bounds while successfully mitigating concerns of saturation by its recent Chinese expansion, all of this only supports Cisco's recent study of increase demand as it projected that by 2016, China will exceed 10% of the global mobile data traffic. On that note, as speculation continues to mount around Apple's iTV or iPanel, it will become more critical for the size of content (presumably) stored on the cloud. It will require a considerable amount of capacity to travel from iPad to iPhone to iTV and back -- without interruption. So in essence, it seems that while the market currently places the value on the growing sales of these devices, the real future value will come from the needs of increased data and bandwidth upon which these devices will function. So as much as Apple is valued as a stock -- and deservedly so, it is clear that the market does not yet see an explosion in growth that Cisco will soon experience.
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