· 16 billion connected devices forecast to
join the Internet of Things by the end of 2021
· Smartphone subscriptions to surpass those
for basic phones in Q3 this year
· Teenage use of cellular data for smartphone
video grew 127 percent in just 15 months
· The latest edition of the Ericsson
(NASDAQ: ERIC) Mobility
Report, published today, reveals that the
Internet of Things (IoT) is set to overtake mobile phones as the largest
category of connected device by 2018.
Between 2015 and 2021, the number of IoT connected devices is expected
to grow 23 percent annually, of which cellular IoT is forecast to have the
highest growth rate. Of the 28 billion total devices that will be connected by
2021, close to 16 billion will be IoT devices.
Western Europe will lead the way in adding IoT connections – the
number of IoT devices in this market is projected to grow 400 percent by 2021. This
will principally be driven by regulatory requirements, for example for
intelligent utility meters, and a growing demand for connected cars including
the EU e-call directive to be implemented in 2018.
Senior Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer, Ericsson, says: “IoT is now
accelerating as device costs fall and innovative applications emerge. From
2020, commercial deployment of 5G networks will provide additional capabilities
that are critical for IoT, such as network slicing and the capacity to connect
exponentially more devices than is possible today.”
Smartphone subscriptions continue to increase and are forecast to
surpass those for basic phones in Q3 this year. By 2021, smartphone
subscriptions will almost double from 3.4 billion to 6.3 billion. Also revealed
in the report, there are now 5 billion mobile subscribers – unique users – in
the world today, which is testament to the phenomenal growth of mobile
technology in a relatively short period of time.
Detailed in the report is a dramatic shift in teen viewing habits:
use of cellular data for smartphone video grew 127 percent in just 15 months
(2014-15). Over a period of four years (2011-15) there has been a 50 percent
drop in the time teens spend watching TV/video on a TV screen, and in contrast
an 85 percent increase in those viewing TV/video on a smartphone. This, and the
fact that the upcoming generation of mobile users are the heaviest consumers of
data for smartphone video streaming (Wi-Fi and cellular combined), makes them
the most important group for cellular operators to monitor.
In 2016, a long anticipated milestone is being passed with
commercial LTE networks supporting downlink peak data speeds of 1 Gbps. Devices
that support 1 Gbps are expected in the second half of 2016, initially in
markets such as Japan, US, South Korea and China, but rapidly spreading to
other regions. Mobile users will enjoy extremely fast time to content thanks to
this enhanced technology, which will enable up to two thirds faster download
speeds compared with the fastest technology available today.
Further highlights from the Ericsson Mobility Report include:
A global growth story: mobile broadband subscriptions will grow fourfold in the Middle
East and Africa between 2015 and 2021; mobile data traffic in India will grow fifteen
times by 2021; and despite being the most mature market, US mobile traffic will
grow 50 percent in 2016 alone.
Data traffic continues unabated
growth: global mobile data traffic grew 60 percent
between Q1 2015 and Q1 2016, due to rising numbers of smartphone subscriptions
and increasing data consumption per subscriber. By the end of 2021, around 90
percent of mobile data traffic will be from smartphones.
LTE subscriptions grew at a
high rate during Q1 2016: there were 150 million new
subscriptions during the quarter – driven by demand for improved user
experience and faster networks – reaching a total of 1.2 billion worldwide. LTE
peak data speeds of 1 Gbps are anticipated to be commercially available in
harmonization needed between countries planning early 5G deployment: 5G is expected to start more quickly than anticipated, and spectrum
harmonization is needed between countries planning early roll-outs. This is in
addition to the current process for WRC-19, which focuses on spectrum for commercial
5G deployments beyond 2020.
The Ericsson Mobility Report is one of the leading analyses of mobile
data traffic available, providing in-depth measurements from live networks
spread around the globe. The report uses these measurements and analysis,
together with internal forecasts and other relevant studies, to provide
insights into current traffic and market trends in the Networked Society.