Forecasts from Ericsson Mobility Report 2014
2015: Mobile subscriptions to surpass global population
In 2015, the total number of mobile subscriptions will exceed the world’s population. Mobile subscriptions have grown by 7 percent year-over-year, with 120 million net additions in Q1 alone. India leads the ‘Top 5’ countries by net additions in Q1 2014. The top 5 countries by net additions accounted for more than 50 percent of new mobile subscriptions in Q1 2014. Mobile broadband subscriptions also continue to grow and will reach 7.6 billion by the end of 2019, representing more than 80 percent of total mobile subscriptions.
2016: Smartphones to outnumber basic mobiles
In the next two years, by 2016, the number of smartphone subscriptions will exceed those for basic phones and by 2019 the number of smartphone subscriptions is expected to reach 5.6 billion. In Europe, the number of smartphone subscriptions will reach about 765 million in 2019, exceeding the population statistic.
In Q1 2014, 65 percent of all phones sold were smartphones. Compared to today, a smartphone user in 2019 is expected to consume almost four times the amount of mobile data per month. This contributes to the 10-fold growth forecast in mobile data traffic between 2013 and 2019.
2019: M2M devices to cross 500 million
The number of active cellular M2M devices will increase 3-4 times by 2019, from 200 million at the end of 2013. While the majority of cellular M2M devices today are still GSM-only, that is expected to shift by 2016 when 3G/4G will represent the majority of active cellular M2M subscriptions. Rima Qureshi, Senior Vice President and Ericsson’s Chief Strategy Officer, says: “We see cellular M2M taking off. Over time, cellular M2M services and applications related to, for example, intelligent transport systems, will require very short latency in order to be efficient. By 2019, we estimate that more than 20 percent of the active cellular M2M devices will be connected to LTE subscriptions. We also see new device-to-device and M2M applications as a key focus of 5G networks.”