According to the report, India added at least 26 million subscribers at a time when the total number of mobile subscriptions in the first quarter of 2015 touched 7.2 billion, including 108 million new subscriptions.
It said that smartphone subscriptions are set to more than double by 2020 and 70 percent of the world’s population will be engulfed by the movement. “By 2020 there will be 26 billion connected devices,” said the report.
Explaining the growth, the Ericsson Mobility Report said growth in mature markets came from an increasing number of devices per individual, while in developing regions, the growth came from a swell of new subscribers as smartphones become more affordable.
“Almost 80 percent of smartphone subscriptions added by year-end 2020 will be from Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa,” it said.
The report also predicted an accelerated growth in data usage (as much as 10-fold) due to surge of smartphones and held that 80 percent of all mobile data traffic will come from smartphones. “The average monthly data usage per smartphone in North America will increase from 2.4GB today to 14GB by 2020,” it said.
Commenting on the findings, Rima Qureshi, senior vice president and chief strategy officer at Ericsson, said: “This immense growth in advanced mobile technology and data usage, driven by a surge in mobile connectivity and smartphone uptake, will make today’s big data revolution feel like the arrival of a floppy disk.”
“We see the potential for mass-scale transformation, bringing a wealth of opportunities for telecom operators and others to capture new revenue streams. But it also requires greater focus on cost efficient delivery and openness to new business models to compete and remain effective,” she added.
The report also predicted that each year until 2020, mobile video traffic will grow by 55 percent yearly and will constitute around 60 percent of all mobile data traffic by the end of that period. “Growth in this sector will be largely driven by shifting user preferences towards video streaming services, and the increasing prevalence of video in online content including news, advertisements and social media,” it said.
Along with the growth in the ecosystem, the report put emphasis on screen sizes and form factors of connected devices. It noted tablet users are projected to spend 50 percent more time watching videos online than average mobile broadband users.