ipoque Internet Study 2007: P2P File Sharing Still Dominates the Worldwide Internet

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ipoque's Internet Study 2007 provides amazing data about P2P, VoIP, Skype, file hosters like RapidShare and streaming services like YouTube. With comprehensive statistics about user behavior, it provides a unique overview of the Internet's current state. Three petabytes of anonymous data representing over one million users in Australia, Eastern Europe, Germany, the Middle East and Southern Europe have been analyzed.

ipoque, provider of solutions for Internet traffic management, analyzed the Internet traffic in five regions of the world between August and September 2007. The results are being published in a study. With comprehensive statistics about user behavior, it provides a unique overview of the Internet's current state. While the emphasis of last year's ipoque survey was on peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing, this year it also includes data about Internet telephony (VoIP), Skype, video streaming, instant messaging (IM), file hosting and encrypted P2P protocols. Three petabytes of anonymous data representing over one million users in Australia, Eastern Europe, Germany, the Middle East and Southern Europe have been analyzed. The results for these different regions vary considerably.

High Proportion of P2P, Movies most Popular
P2P file sharing still generates by far the most Internet traffic. Its average share varies between 49 percent in the Middle East and 84 percent in Eastern Europe. At nighttime, P2P raises up to 95 percent. Every fifth Internet user also uses file sharing. BitTorrent is the most popular P2P protocol. Only in Southern Europe, eDonkey still dominates.
ipoque's analysis, for the first time, also covers encrypted P2P protocols. Encryption is meant to provide anonymity to file sharers and evade traffic shaping and blocking by network operators. About 20 percent of BitTorrent and eDonkey traffic are already encrypted.
The P2P content analysis revealed little changes compared to last year's study. Videos make up the largest proportion. The most popular titles are current movies, pornography and music. Remarkable high is the share of eBooks in the Middle East and computer games in Southern Europe.

95 Percent of all Internet Telephony is Skype
Voice over IP (VoIP) only accounts for one percent of the Internet traffic, but is used by 30 percent of all users. Skype is by far the most popular Internet telephony application.

The popularity of instant messaging (IM) varies heavily from region to region. In the Middle East, 60 percent of all Internet users also use IM, in Germany, however, it is only 17 percent.

Joost does not yet have a significant relevance, despite its high media presence. Quite the opposite can be said about Flash movies embedded in Web sites like YouTube, which produced considerably more traffic. This and other forms of video streaming generated eight percent of the Internet traffic during the measurement period.

New Phenomenon: File Hosting
A relatively new file sharing phenomenon are file hosting services, also known as one-click file hosters, such as RapidShare and MegaUpload. These are operators of web servers where arbitrary files can be uploaded. The user gets a URL pointing to the uploaded file -- the so-called "Direct Download Link" (DDL). This link can then be provided to other users for instance in Web forums or via e-mail. Although file hosters are only used by a relatively small number of Internet users, they are responsible for between four and nine percent of all Internet traffic.

Many of the examined applications have been subject of controversial discussions about copyright infringements and network congestion. Furthermore, net neutrality along with possible charges for particularly data-intensive services have been in the focus of public attention. Hendrik Schulze, CEO of ipoque and co-author of the study, explains: "With this study we want to contribute facts to the numerous, often heated debates on these topics."

An extended abstract of the study is available at http://www.ipoque.com/media. The entire version can also be obtained on our Web site for a fee of 190 Euros.

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KLAUS MOCHALSKI
ipoque GmbH
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