Since its conception in March of 1989, the Internet has become ubiquitous in cultures across the globe. According to the Pew Research Center, 87 percent of Americans use the Internet, while 97 percent of people age 18 to 29 use it as well. It’s an astonishing rate of adoption that will cover the entire world as technology grows to accompany the Internet of Things and virtual reality.

Have you ever stopped to think how your company has used the Internet since it began? Or, if your company is younger than 25, since your business began?

Americans are embracing the Internet and what it has to offer at a exceedingly quick rate. If your company struggled to keep up with trends before now, it will only fall further down the ladder as Internet proliferates in offices across the globe.

It’s not going away any time soon

The Internet opens portals to resources that were never dreamed of before 1989. Data, communication and video usage runs rampant. The usage has gotten to the point where 46 percent of U.S. adults find it nearly impossible to give up the Internet, according to Pew. That’s more than televisions and cell phones.

Going online has become a hallmark of society and it wasted no time seeping into corporate plans everywhere. In the office, networked information is passed around and consumed at high rates, Lee Rainie, director of Pew Research Center’s Internet Project, noted.

“Stop and think – can your network handle video?”

This is a given. Who doesn’t spend an hour a day sending out emails and reading executive announcements? Finding out information is tiring and time consuming, to say the least. What’s changing, though, is how people consume that information.

Rainie also pointed to multi-platform networking being a way in which people take in information. These days, this could be through social media and video. Five years down the line, who knows?

Companies must accommodate the increasing reliance on multi-platform information consumption in the present if they ever want to be ready for the future. For example, how well can your legacy network handle video? Could you live stream a corporate announcement to 50 or more employees? How about host onboarding videos on the intranet? Or provide internal communications through videos?

If you answered “not well” to any of these, then you have an issue. Your network is limiting you from participating in time-saving, engaging ventures that have revolutionized the way some offices operate. Sit stagnant any longer and you’ll be incorporating the technology trends of 2017 into your business plan by 2025.

Fast adoption rates mean quick to adopt trends

When Netflix arrived on the scene, not too many people kept using Blockbuster because, “it had worked so well for them in the past.” Customers switched in droves to the easy, at-home service and Blockbuster was quickly busted.

When new technology arrives and changes the way people interact with services, objects and other people, history’s track record suggests that it’s adopted quickly. Take smartphones, for example. Rainie found that in 2011, just 35 percent of survey respondents owned a smartphone, while 48 percent owned some other type of cell phone. This quickly changed over the next two years as apps started to play a bigger role in how people live.

Computer desk with various equipment

The popularity of smartphones is an indicator that video will soon have a presence in the office.

When the data was last collected in 2013, Rainie found that the market shifted and 56 percent of survey respondents possessed a smartphone, and the number of people that still had a different type of cell phone dropped to 35 percent. The change isn’t completely inverse, but the rate of adoption to newer, better technology is proportional to the rate of innovation.

Older networks won’t be able to handle the trend of video, as 92 percent of a Melcrum survey respondents believe video is becoming an important part of internal communication. It connects with people much better than text, but without an enterprise content delivery network, many companies won’t be able to handle it. An ECDN will reroute the data files being transferred so the extra bandwidth usage that accompanies video won’t bring down the legacy network.

Effectively, companies are able to spend just a small amount of money (compared to upgrading their network entirely) by switching to an ECDN for the possibility of having a network able to handle new trends in business.