The paper, titled Demand for fixed-line broadband in Australia, forecast that by 2026, the average household would use 420GB of data per month, more than four times the demand in 2016 which was put at 95GB per month.
The 42-page working paper, issued by the Department's Bureau of Communications and Arts Research said peak bandwidth demand for the households with the highest usage was forecast to increase from between 11Mbps to 20Mbps in 2016 to between 20Mbps to 49Mbps in 2026.
Ninety-eight percent of households were estimated to demand less than this bandwidth in 2026. In other words, only 2% of households were expected to demand more than 49Mbps bandwidth.
"The more cars that use the road at the same time the slower will be the flow of traffic. In peak periods, it will take longer for any one vehicle to reach its destination."
The paper said that the following factors influenced both bandwidth demand for individual households and at a regional basis:
- The number of households accessing data at any given point in time, which affects overall demand.
- The demographics of those households, such as age and the number of people, which determines the propensity to use data-intensive applications.
- Technology developments which may either increase demand for bandwidth, through the adoption and increased usage of new applications, or alleviate pressures on bandwidth, for example through compression technology which decreases file sizes of video.
- The time of day, as aggregate household demand increases outside working hours, during evenings or weekends.
The report said it had taken into account the increasing use of video on demand, Internet-of-Things device growth, and virtual reality adoption when making predictions about bandwidth demand.