Ericsson’s Mobility Report for the Middle East and North East Africa (RMEA), reveals that, despite the market being extremely varied with regards to Information and Communications Technology (ICT) adoption and mobile penetration, the proliferation of mobile technologies continue at a rapid pace. RMEA mobile data traffic will grow 14 times between 2014 to 2020, while globally data will grow nine times.
Rafiah Ibrahim, President, Ericsson, Region Middle East and East Africa said: “The ICT transformation has been phenomenal across the region. Such transformation is far beyond simple technological innovation, it calls us to reshape existing business models and infrastructure environments. In the future, it will address completely new needs arising from technological and consumer behavioral changes. Just imagine the possibilities.”
Ibrahim adds: “Ericsson’s mobility report provides a glimpse into the future of mobility, allowing us to capture the opportunities made possible by the Networked Society, where everything that can be connected will be connected.”
The region as a whole had around 680 million mobile subscriptions at the end of 2014. Between 2014 and 2020 it is forecast that mobile subscriptions will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6 percent, amounting to 970 million.
The Ericsson Mobility Report shows that in 2020 the growth of technology coupled with the mobile subscriptions will create never-before-seen levels of connectivity in the region.
LTE subscriptions too are on the rise and are expected to triple in 2015 alone, and surpass 210 million by 2020, equating to around 20 percent of all mobile subscriptions.
17 percent or 125 million of all mobile subscriptions were attributed to smartphones at the end of 2014; however, as inexpensive smartphones become abundant and mobile broadband roll outs accelerate, smartphone subscriptions will increase across all the markets. Of the 970 million mobile subscriptions predicted at the end of 2020, 40 percent will come from smartphones.
14 times growth expected in mobile data traffic by 2020
By 2020, the amount of data used monthly by each active smartphone will increase substantially from an average of 0.8GB in 2014 to approximately 5GB.
Data intensive utility, communication and entertainment services are commonly used by smartphone owners. Mobile video traffic will continue to grow driven by video streaming services and increasing prevalence of video in social media.