Mobile broadband customers to top 5.1 billion within four years – as global connections near 10 billion.
The GSMA expects the number of mobile broadband connections will surpass 5.1 billion by 2017 – more than trebling the current 1.6 billion today.
The comment came from the GSMA chairman and CEO of Telecom Italia Franco Bernabe during the opening keynote discussion at the 2013 Mobile World Congress.
Bernabe said the GSMA expects the number of SIM connected devices to increase from around seven billion today to around 9.7 billion by 2017.
Mobile subscribers numbers are expected to increase from 3.2 billion to 3.9 billion during this period.
LTE subscribers are expected to reach around one billion by this time also, up from 62 million today.
Bernabe told the packed auditorium: “Mobile is clearly the technology connecting the world to the internet. Over the next five years mobile will continue to grow at a very substantial rate.
“By 2017, we expect to see a base of around 9.7 billion mobile connections and four billion mobile subscribers. Mobile broadband will be major contributor in this expansion.”