Mobile broadband use set to rocket

By Phil Muncaster on Jul 17, 2009 2:30 PM
Filed under Technology

Users accessing the web from netbooks and laptops will reach 418 million by

Portable laptop and netbook users accessing the internet via mobile broadband will generate $48bn (£29bn) in revenues by 2017, according to new figures from technology research firm Coda Research Consultancy.

An estimated 418 million users of laptops and netbooks with mobile broadband will be responsible for a whopping 1.8 exabytes of web traffic a month by that time, representing a forty-fold increase over 2009.

Enhancements to Long Term Evolution (LTE) technologies will have a profound impact on mobile broadband users and revenues during the period, said Coda Research. Half of all mobile broadband via netbook and laptop users worldwide will be using LTE by 2017, according to the report.

However, Coda Research founder Steve Smith warned that, although there are tremendous opportunities for operators and device and component manufacturers, the risks are significant.

"With enormous growth in traffic and considerable decline in average revenue per user, operators will need to be ruthlessly efficient," he said.

"LTE is going to be an important cushion for operators, but our research shows that they will need to take into account the very different factors impacting 3G and 3G+ growth across regions, and decide carefully how, when and where to market LTE."

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