Mobile broadband fastest growing ICT market, report says

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Mobile-broadband is the fastest growing segment of the global information and communications technology market and is now more affordable than fixed broadband, an Oct. 7 International Telecommunications Union report says.

By 2018 there will be 6.5 billion mobile-broadband subscriptions, the report (.pdf) says, more than twice the amount of people connected to the internet through fixed broadband. By the end of 2013 there will be 6.8 billion total mobile-cellular subscriptions, the report says.

Mobile-broadband connections over 3G and 3G+ networks have been growing at an average annual rate of 40 percent since 2010, which means almost 50 percent of all people worldwide are now covered by a 3G network, the report says.

Mobile-broadband is growing rapidly not only in developed, but also developing countries, where subscriptions doubled over the past two years, the report says.In Africa, mobile-broadband penetration rates will reach almost 11 percent by the end of 2013, up from 2 percent only three years earlier, the report says.

Overall in developing countries, mobile broadband took off in 2010, and penetration rates will have increased from 4.4 percent to almost 20 percent by end 2013.

In developing countries, mobile-broadband is a substitute for fixed-broadband access; while in developed countries, mobile broadband is often a complement to fixed-broadband, say report authors.

For more:
- download the report (.pdf)

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