Berlin, August 11, 2010
The threshold of 5 billion mobile phone subscribers will be exceeded this year for the first time. By the end of the year, the 4.5 billion figure will have increased by 12 per cent to 5.1 billion. Of these, 800 million persons are already using the fast UMTS mobile communications standard; an increase of 37 per cent. In 2011, there will already be more than one billion UMTS subscribers. This has been reported by the European Information Technology Observatory (EITO). “Growth of mobile phone subscribers is driven by emerging markets”, says EITO Chairman Bruno Lamborghini. “Meanwhile in the industrial countries users are increasingly adopting smartphones which provide mobile internet access."
The number of mobile phone subscribers has doubled in the past five years. This figure is expected to rise by 10 percent to 5.6 billion in 2011.I The growth in developing and emerging countries is especially strong. According to the most recent data from the UN agency International Telecommunication Union (ITU), more than half the homes in these countries, even in rural areas, have a mobile phone connection. Landlines are rarely found or not at all. In the EU the number of mobile phone subscribers is expected to rise to around 650 million by the end of 2010. This is a growth of almost 3 per cent compared to the previous year. Nearly a third of these now use UMTS. Germany has the most mobile phone contracts in the EU: around 111 million by the end of 2010. Germany is followed by Italy (87 million), Great Britain (81 million), France (62 million) and Spain (57 million). By comparison: There are an anticipated 220 million in Russia and 287 million in the USA.
The use of mobile communications is increasing far more in Asia and South America than in Europe and North America. In China, the number of mobile phone subscribers has risen by almost 13 percent this year to around 844 million. This figure is expected to grow by one-tenth within the next year to 930 million. In India, the number of subscriptions will go up by 30 per cent to 680 million. In Brazil, there will be 193 million connections by the end of the year; a growth of 11 percent. Japan is technically very advanced: 96 percent of all mobile communications users already use UMTS.
Since 1993, the European Information Technology Observatory (www.eito.com) offers high quality and up-to-date information on European and global markets for information technology, telecommunications and consumer electronics. The EITO is managed by Bitkom Research GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of BITKOM, the Federal Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media in Germany. EITO collaborates with leading market research institutes including IDATE, IDC and GfK, and research activities of the EITO Task Force are supported by the European Commission and the OECD. EITO is sponsored by CeBIT, Deutsche Telekom, KPMG, Messe München, Red.es and Telecom Italia.