Wired magazine has decided to declare the World Wide Web on life support as part of a cover story for its September issue, based on data provided by Cisco's Visual Networking Index tracking HTTP usage as a percentage of overall Internet traffic over the past twenty years. According to Wired, from 1990 to 2000, Web traffic shot up from nothing to become over half of all Internet transmissions. But from 2000, that share has declined to 23 percent today, pushed down by streaming video and peer-to-peer protocols.
P2P experienced its own surge in popularity during the last decade, but now sits at 23 percent also, while video has exploded to represent over half of all Internet traffic. That number might be a bit misleading, though, as TechCrunch discovered that Wired lumped all YouTube traffic into the video category, even though it is largely viewed through a web browser. The video category also includes things like Skype video calls and Netflix streaming movies.
Wired's story appears to center on the fact that Internet users are largely starting to consume information in other ways than through a web browser - via apps on iOS devices and through broadband connected televisions, representing a significant transition in the way we use the Internet.