Cisco regularly tracks and forecasts the impact of the rapidly growing Internet video industry. In its latest 2013 Visual Networking Index (VNI) report, the networking giant notes that Ustream, YouTube and other video-streaming services – also known as content delivery network (CDNs) – are becoming the dominant method of delivering online video to computers, TVs and other devices.

While CDNs carried an estimated 53 percent of all global Internet video traffic in 2012, Cisco expects that figure to reach 65 percent in 2017. By then, it forecasts, consumers around the globe will be downloading or streaming three times more online video to their PCs than they did in 2012, or more than 46,000 petabytes a month. That’s enough to fill more than 1 billion DVD discs.

Clearly, the explosive growth in Internet video consumption presents great opportunities, and big challenges. At Ustream, we’re constantly thinking ahead and looking for innovative ways to more effectively capitalize on that growth. So to help us better understand the macro trends and market opportunities, we’ve asked Duxbury, Mass.-based Wainhouse Research to develop additional market data and to formulate a series of white papers focused on our industry — specifically live video — over the next 12 months.

Steve Vonder Haar, the Wainhouse senior analyst who will be spearheading the research effort, will start by gathering baseline market data to track the industry’s size and growth, as well as users’ views about it. He expects to find that a lack of awareness is one of the biggest obstacles to the wider adoption of Internet video. Over the years, we’ve been laser-focused on the live experience, and we believe live video is growing at a faster clip than video-on-demand, particularly in the business sector.

“History shows that executives tend to use live video more frequently as they learn more about the ways that the technology can be used to make far-flung communications more engaging and effective,” Vonder Haar says. “Through research that highlights end-users’ attitudes towards the adoption, use and perceptions of streaming technologies, we’ll strive to shine a spotlight on the factors shaping the business case for live video adoption.”

Ustream CEO and founder Brad Hunstable expects the business video market to grow nearly twice as fast as consumer video, but seeks additional data to confirm and quantify that. “That’s why we’ve sought out Wainhouse Research, to bring transparency into the industry,” he says.

Meantime, Ustream’s streaming video products and services are already helping hundreds of businesses – including the likes of Cisco, HBO, Salesforce and Sony Computer Entertainment – to benefit from the industry’s growth. “We believe our socially-fueled technology platform is ideally-suited for them to reach larger audiences,” says Hunstable, “and we will continue to pave the way as the industry evolves.”