Openwave Mobility’s Mobile Video Industry Council meeting in London, and including Tier 1 mobile operators Deutsche Telekom, EE, KPN, MTS, Orange, Telefonica, Telus and Vodafone, expect that up to 90% of 5G traffic could be mobile video.
This projection is based on current trends and the upward trajectory of mobile video traffic, which has grown more than 50% year-on-year.
Growth in volumes of video traffic was, unsurprisingly, a major discussion point. What is surprising is the reason for this growth. For most operators, growth in mobile video from 2010 to 2015 came as a result of increased video watch times. But, since 2015, growth in mobile video has come significantly as a result of a move to higher bandwidth HD content, rather than greater watch time only.
This has also meant higher levels of obfuscated encryption protocols such as QUIC (Google) and 0-RTT (Facebook and Instagram) flooding the network impeding operators’ ability to deliver a consistent QoE. The Council in fact debated the conflicting components of QoE i.e. Quality of Delivery (reduced buffering) versus Quality of Picture (resolution) and the implications.
A special OTT content providers’ session with Hulu and BT Sport shed light on the problems of shoe-horning TV content into mobile and the launching of new companies developing new video content “made for mobile”. The Council also highlighted the stress placed on networks by live events, especially sporting occasions, such as Russia 2018. Here data consumption during a match was found to be double the data consumed during the “busy hour” for the remainder of the year.