Mobile Broadband Drives Growth in 17 Countries

By Gary Kim December 14, 2012

Mobile broadband is driving revenue growth, while voice revenue is declining in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia, Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden, Ireland, Poland, Brazil, Russia, India and China in 2011, according to a study by Ofcom, the United Kingdom communications regulator.

Fixed voice revenue fell by an average of 7.3 percent in 2011, compared to a 7.1-percent decrease in 2010.

Mobile data has seen the fastest growth rate, with a compound annual growth rate of 25.4 percent between 2006 and 2011.

As a result, for the first time in 2011, overall mobile data revenues exceeded fixed broadband revenue in the 17 countries.

At the country level, though, only in three of the countries does mobile data revenue exceed fixed broadband revenues (United States, Japan and Australia).

Mobile services represent 61 percent of total service provider revenue, overall.

Still, fixed broadband accounted for 39 percent of total fixed telecom service provider revenue in 2011, ranging from 25 percent in Ireland to 55 percent in France.

Across all 17 countries as a whole, fixed broadband represents about 13 percent of total communications service provider revenue, including all mobile and fixed services.

But fixed voice still represents 25 percent of total service provider revenue.

Fixed voice revenue fell by 5.2 percent in the United Kingdom during 2011 – a higher rate that the 3.3-percent average in the five years to 2011.

Fixed voice call volumes also fell in all of the countries for which figures were available in 2011, except France.

Growth in the fixed voice market in France was largely a result of high uptake of managed VoIP services.

The fastest rates of fixed voice pricing decline are being found in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) countries, with revenue falling by 17.8 percent in China and 15.3 percent in India. Among the non-BRIC countries, annual falls in revenue were highest in Poland (13.3 percent) and France (13.1 percent).

The total number of fixed lines among the 17 countries fell by 4 percent to 767 million in 2011. The number of lines fell in all of these countries (except Brazil and the U.K.), where the number of lines increased by two percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.

Edited by Braden Becker

Contributing Editor

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