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Number of mobile phone users worldwide to increase to 2 billion by 2007
Posted on 8-Aug-2003 08:41 | Tags Filed under: News

Number of mobile phone users worldwide to increase to 2 billion by 2007
The next five years will see a slowing of worldwide cellular subscriber growth, reports In-Stat/MDR. However, despite the fact that there has been a lot of fuss about the “catastrophic slowdown" in subscriber growth, there will be more than 931 million new subscribers over the next 5 years. By 2007, the total worldwide wireless population will exceed two billion subscribers.

A recent report released by the high-tech market research finds that while China, in the Eastern Asia region, continues to lead the world in overall subscriber growth, the new percentage growth leaders are found in Southern Asia and Southeast Asia. “It is rather remarkable that the fastest numerically growing country, China, is trailing Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East in Compound Annual Growth Rate,” says Ken Hyers, a Senior Analyst with In-Stat/MDR. “However, the fact that Western Europe and Scandinavia bring up the rear, as they did in previous 2002 to 2006 forecasts, should be no surprise.”

In-Stat/MDR has also found that:
  • Western Europe’s growth virtually stops during In-Stat/MDR’s 2002-2007 forecast period, with a CAGR of 1.2%. This can be expected, as the penetration rate in 2007 will be 83.6%.
  • CDMA will continue to be the single most dominant airlink in the US throughout the forecast period. TDMA will be phased out, in favor of GSM, and by the end of the forecast period, TDMA networks will no longer be operational in the US.
  • Analog will be completely phased out of Western Europe by 2004, and does not expect CDMA to make any inroads in Western Europe. By the end of the forecast period, Western European subscriber growth will have reached near saturation levels, resulting in anemic subscriber growth. UMTS subscriber growth will come at the expense of GSM.
  • In Europe, overall, GSM’s overall market share will decline, from 99.1% in 2002 to 91.4% in 2007. In-Stat/MDR continues to believe that UMTS will not achieve significant market share during this forecast period.
  • Despite NTT DoCoMo’s strong support for FOMA in Japan, the service has been plagued with teething problems during rollout, and faces stiff competition for KDDI’s AU. NTT DoCoMo will not be able to leverage its dominant Share-Of-Market (SOM) vis-à-vis FOMA to surpass AU before 2006.

    Throughout In-Stat/MDR’s forecast period, the annual subscriber growth will average over 186 million.

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