The number of mobile devices is expected to exceed the number of people on the planet by 2016, and mobile web traffic is going up every day. But as more devices come into play, the Internet is going to need to be rewired to support the vast number of devices looking to connect and so in more efficient ways.
Various new approaches are aimed at changing the way information is ported through servers. One new approach from Named Data Networking (NDN) would route information based on location, rather than just through an IP address, to take advantage of the mobility of smartphones and tablets.
Lixia Zhang, a computer scientist at UCLA who heads the project, explained to Technology Review, “Today I have on my desk a smartphone, a tablet, and a Mac computer. To move data between them, the request goes all the way to the cloud—God knows where that is—so it can come back here to another device that is two feet away. That is wrong, it is simply wrong.”