Next-Generation Ethernet to Support 1Tb/s Speeds by 2015

Terabit-Speed Ethernet Standards Incoming

by Anton Shilov
08/21/2012 | 11:13 PM

IEEE, the world's largest technology standard setting organization, has announced formation of the IEEE 802.3 industry connections higher speed Ethernet consensus group, to build consensus toward the development of the next speed of Ethernet. IEEE is looking forward towards 1Tb/s Ethernet standard by 2015 and 10Tb/s standard by 2020.


“The information gathered by the Bandwidth Assessment Ad Hoc demonstrates the ongoing, exponential bandwidth growth that is happening in varying application spaces on a global nature. The launch of the IEEE 802.3 industry connections higher speed ethernet consensus group will facilitate an open forum to explore the start beyond 100Gb/s Ethernet,” said John D’Ambrosia, chair of the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet bandwidth assessment and chief Ethernet evangelist.  

According to a research conducted by IEEE, the global bandwidth requirements of multiple application spaces are continuing an exponential climb. The report forecasts that, if current trends continue, networks will need to support capacity requirements of 1Tb/s in 2015 and 10Tb/s by 2020.

In creating the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet Bandwidth Assessment report, input was collected from a variety of application spaces (servers, data center networks, high-performance computing, financial markets, carrier and cable operators, Internet exchanges, the scientific community, etc.) and from different geographic regions. The report confirms that growth is being driven across multiple application spaces and markets by simultaneous increases in users, access methodologies, access rates and services (such as video on demand and social media). The report indicates that bandwidth requirements of network-aggregation nodes are growing at an even faster rate than end-station applications, which initiate the transmission and receipt of data. Among industries, the most aggressive growth rates are shown by the financial sector and data-intensive science, with compounded annual growth rates (CAGRs) of 95% and 70%, respectively.

“The data from smartphones, tablets, PCs and another 16 billion devices forecasted to be on the Internet by 2020 all flow through the wireless, CATV and wired access points, through the metro, long-haul and undersea networks, to a data-center server anywhere in the world. Add to this the dramatic increase in the use of live and streaming video, and the data traffic calculations become simply astronomical. The only way all these different devices are going to communicate with each other is via industry standards set by groups such as the IEEE,” said Brad Smith, senior vice president and industry analyst with, a market research firm that analyzes and forecasts high-speed interconnects.