[Report] Smartphones to Account for Two Thirds of Global Mobile Market by 2020
Smartphones will account for two out of every three mobile connections globally by 2020, according to a major new report by GSMA Intelligence, the research arm of the GSMA.
The new study, “Smartphone forecasts and assumptions, 2007-2020”, finds that smartphones account for one in three mobile connections today, representing more than two billion mobile connections.
It forecasts that the number of smartphone connections will grow three-fold over the next six years, reaching six billion by 2020, accounting for two-thirds of the nine billion mobile connections by that time. Basic phones, feature phones and data terminals such as tablets, dongles and routers will account for the remaining connections. The study excludes M2M from the connections totals.
Hyunmi Yang, Chief Strategy Officer at the GSMA, said: “The smartphone has sparked a wave of global innovation that has brought new services to millions and efficiencies to businesses of every type. As the study released today shows, smartphones will be the driving force of mobile industry growth over the next six years, with one billion new smartphone connections expected over the next 18 months alone.
“In the hands of consumers, these devices are improving living standards and changing lives, especially in developing markets, while contributing to growing economies by stimulating entrepreneurship. As the industry evolves, smartphones are becoming lifestyle hubs that are creating opportunities for mobile industry players in vertical markets such as financial services, healthcare, home automation and transport.”
The developing world overtook the developed world in terms of smartphone connections in 2011 and today accounts for two in every three smartphones on the planet, according to the new study.
Top ten global smartphone markets, Q2 2014:
- China (629.2 million connections)
- USA (196.8m)
- Brazil (141.8m)
- India (111m)
- Indonesia (95m)
- Russia (83.9m)
- Japan (66.1m)
- Germany (48.5m)
- United Kingdom (45.4m)
- France (43.5m)
The top five countries worldwide with the highest smartphone adoption rates today (as a percentage of total connections) are Qatar, the UAE, Finland, South Korea and Norway.
By contrast, Sub-Saharan Africa currently has the lowest smartphone adoption rate worldwide, at 15 percent, but is expected to be the fastest-growing smartphone region over the next six years as affordable devices become more widely available and mobile broadband networks are deployed across Africa.
Factors driving the smartphone market
The new GSMA Intelligence report highlights a number of factors influencing growth in the global smartphone market, including:
- Rapid erosion of the Average Selling Price (ASP) of smartphones is accelerating user migration from basic and feature phones to smartphones
- Demand for low-end smartphones is driving volume growth, with sub-$50 smartphones becoming a reality
- Operator-branded smartphones sold via operator retail channels is a key trend driving the low-end segment
- Operator subsidies continue to play an important role in driving the adoption of high-end devices, but are being scaled back at lower price tiers
- The availability of 4G-LTE smartphones is influenced by the pace of allocation and assignment of 4G spectrum by regulators around the world
- The availability of ‘data-centric’ services and tariffs is fuelling the adoption of smartphones in both developed and developing economies
- In the developing world, smartphone adoption is linked to the availability of data tariffs tailored for cost-conscious prepaid consumers
- Smartphone growth is negatively impacted by taxation imposed on devices by governments, especially in price-sensitive developing economies
- In the developing world, there is a correlation between an increase in smartphone adoption and an increase in mobile broadband connections
NetNumber: Time for a cloud-native transformation
NetNumber is accelerating the transition in the telecom industry to 5G as it starts a shift to cloud-native architecture to address the fast-paced demands of global subscribers and businesses.
NetNumber is offering the industry’s first cloud-native platform designed to ensure InterGENerational™ network performance addresses both the legacy and next-generation requirements of telecom networks.
“NetNumber has developed the industry’s most robust cloud-native, InterGENerational platform that addresses both the legacy and 5G requirements of telcos,” said Matt Rosenberg, Chief Revenue Officer of NetNumber.
The platform provides vertical and horizontal scale-out with low latency, coupled with a suite of data replication capabilities, which provide flexible architectural options that can evolve with the changing network over time.
“Cloud-based solutions from other vendors tend to be limited in terms of supporting particular network generations or protocols. We’ve created our latest platform TITAN.IUM to allow customers to take any generation of applications, any generation of legacy services and protocols and move them into the new world of cloud-native architecture,” said Rosenberg.
“This is a really important part for a carrier to harmonise their network, bring data services together, bring legacy with new together in order to make a more effective and efficient network, as well as reduce their cost as they scale forward,” he said.
Established in 1999, NetNumber has fostered a strong team environment that leverages the industry’s best skills to offer software solutions tailored for carriers of all dimensions. Based outside of Boston and with presence in over 20 countries, the company delivers a range of products that address all generations (2G, 3G, 4G, 5G) of network functions in the core network, deep rooted security products and services, STIR/ SHAKEN and set of options around data services in more than 90 countries.
Steeped in experience in building telecom solutions, software, protocol stacks, and integration of third party tools, the company’s development organisation has proven to supply to the industry with the most reliable and flexible solutions on the market.
“At NetNumber, we focus on our core competencies – we are dedicated to providing industry expertise in signaling, routing, security, subscriber management and data services. We provide customers a strong ROI through platform-based solutions that reduce Capex and Opex in the long-term,” commented Rosenberg.
Five reasons why customers choose NetNumber:
- Expertise - NetNumber has experts with deep knowledge in signaling/routing, security, and subscriber database management.
- Integration - An industry-first platform brings together domain services, applications, security, and global data services.
- Scale - NetNumber has the ability to seamlessly increase network efficiency using vertical and horizontal scaling.
- Speed - World-class solutions have the power to help companies create new service offerings and accelerate time to ROI.
- Savings - Customers enjoy significant savings in capex and opex, flexible deployment models, and investment protection.
NetNumber and Virgin Mobile MEA
“We're very proud of our partnership with Virgin Mobile MEA as they've taken the concept of the InterGENerational platform into their regional network strategy,” commented Rosenberg. “That’s accelerated how they develop exceptional services across the Middle East and Africa region.
“We work with them hand-in-hand to deliver multiple applications onto our platform which has enabled them to provide exceptional, advanced and innovative services to their customers across the Middle East, who demand high quality services.
“What they've really taken advantage of is scale. What I mean by that is they are putting multiple generations of applications and services onto the same platform and distributing that data across their network. That has resulted in an advantageous position of time to market and operational savings.
“Rather than having different applications for many different vendors that cause operational chaos, they've been able to consolidate that and reduce their operating costs by having everything on one common architecture. We’ve had a long-term relationship with Virgin Mobile in Saudi Arabia, and recently signed an agreement with Virgin Mobile in Kuwait.”
Rosenberg says that with these solutions, Virgin Mobile MEA can take advantage of getting to the market much quicker and faster—which is what today’s discerning customer demands.