Why Asia’s Next One Billion Users Are Integral To The Future Mobile Economy
“We believe that the next 1bn people are very young and very ambitious. For the very first time they are able to afford their own mobile phone, it is not a device they have to share with their family or the village. It’s their own.” Nokia CEO Stephen Elop at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona
I visited India twice over the past year and one thing that really stood out was the sheer number of mobile users. From the affluent suburbs to the poorer inner city and village areas, everyone I saw seemed to be hooked to their mobile device. And it’s a trend that is shared across of much of Asia.
As penetration of broadband and high-speed mobile internet like LTE and 4G grow so do the opportunities and prospects of their users and their home countries.
Manoj Kohli, CEO of India’s Bharti Airtel (3rd largest global mobile operator with 261m subscribers in 20 countries) explained that for every 10% increase in broadband penetration in a developing country there is a corresponding 1% increase in GDP.
It is predicted emerging markets will drive global communication in the future with 61&%of the new 1.6bn new connections will be in Asia. To help facilitate this operators and mobile companies are pushing for lower costs devices in these regions.
“Emerging markets continue to feature heavily in the keynote speeches at MWC 2013, with both Nokia and Bharti Airtel highlighting that the next billion internet connections will come from mobile users in emerging markets. While connections growth in Asia-Pacific will begin to slow towards the end of our forecast period, the region’s 4.4bn connections in 2017 will make it the greatest contributor to global connections. Growth in the Asia-Pacific region will largely be driven by the big three emerging markets of China, India, and Indonesia, which will have 3bn connections between them in 2017. While Asia-Pacific will generate the most new connections, Africa will be the fastest-growing region. African mobile connections will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 6.5pc between 2012 and 2017, increasing from 683m in 2012 to 935m in 2017. Both Nokia and Airtel’s CEOs talked about the need for cheaper devices. The strategies of operators in Vietnam, India, Pakistan, and Tanzania demonstrate how telcos can operate in markets where average revenue per user (ARPU) is below US$3 per month.” Carrie Pawsey, Telco Strategy Aanalyst, Ovum.
Find out more in this infographic from GSMA. Among the findings:
- Mobile industry contribution to global GDP will grow to $10.5 Trillion between 2013 and 2017
- Today’s 3.4bn mobile users jump to 3.9bn by 2017
- Mobile data volumes will jump from 0.9 Exabytes per month in 2009 to 11.2 Exabytes per month by 2017
- One on 5 connections will be LTE / $G by 2017
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