Ericsson Report: Mobile subscriptions to reach 9.3-billion by 2019

In this report released in November 2013, Ericsson has performed in-depth data traffic measurements in mobile networks from the world’s largest installed base of live networks. These measurements have been collected from all regions of the world since the early days of mobile broadband. The aim of this report is to share analysis based on these measurements, internal forecasts and other relevant studies to provide insights into the current traffic and market trends.

According to the report, the number of mobile subscriptions worldwide has grown approximately 7 percent year-on-year during Q3 2013. The number of mobile broadband subscriptions grew even faster over this period – at a rate of 40 percent year-on-year, exceeding 2 billion in 2013. The amount of data usage per subscription also continued to grow steadily and around 55 percent of all mobile phones solid in Q3 2013 were smartphones.

Together, these factors have contributed to an increase in monthly mobile data traffic over Q3 2013 that exceeded total monthly mobile data traffic in Q4 2009. This issue goes beyond previous issues by using the radio characteristics of a WCDMA/HSPA network to predict coverage area and indoor penetration for popular smartphone applications such as streaming music and video, video telephony, and circuit-switched voice. It applies the same app type requirements on downlink speed to compare network performance in 17 cities globally. It also includes consumer research results on perceived differences in voice and internet coverage at different locations in a city. The article on gaming takes a look at the US market and discusses the correlation between playing games and watching video on smartphones in the region.

To read the full report, click HERE.

Africa will rule the world in mobile money

Mobile money transactions – African countries like Nigeria, Kenya, and Tanzania have been predicted to rule the world in mobile money transactions, which include mobile banking and mobile wallet, in the next few years, going by the continent’s population and zeal for technology advancement.
Head, Marketing and Strategy at Ericsson, Mr. Shiletsi Makhofane, who made the prediction in Sweden, while unveiling the company’s Digital Agenda for Africa, advised banks and tele-communications operators in Africa to see the opportunities and take advantage of them to boost African technology development. read more

Strengthening Africa’s ICT ecosystem means analyzing results and adjusting goals

A recap of ICT ecosystem goals set at the Connect Africa Summit held in October 2007 (in attendance were hundreds of participants from forty-three African countries) provides interesting commentary on how far African ICT has progressed in six years. Much has improved in terms of broadband access and policy, for example, but the level of development has fallen short of what stakeholders hoped for six years ago. Connectivity, universal access, policy, ICT skills, and e-applications take time to improve even when resources are focused.

The 87-page Connecting Africa Main Report, launched by AfDB during the Transform Africa 2013 summit (held in Kigali, Rwanda), assesses the goals set in 2007 and provides an updated outlook for African ICT development. Most often, goals have been pushed back by three years and additional means of reaching these goals have been added. read more

Report:Mobile Phones and Economic Development in Africa

Access to and use of mobile telephony in sub-Saharan Africa has increased dramatically over the past decade. Mobile telephony has brought new possibilities to the continent. Across urban-rural and rich-poor divides, mobile phones connect individuals to individuals, information, markets, and services. These effects can be particularly dramatic in rural Africa, where in many places mobile phones have represented the first modern telecommunications infrastructure of any kind. Mobile phones have greatly reduced communication costs, thereby allowing individuals and firms to send and to obtain information quickly and cheaply on a variety of economic, social, and political topics.
An emerging body of research shows that the reduction in communication costs associated with mobile phones has tangible economic benefits, improving agricultural and labor market efficiency and producer and consumer welfare in specific circumstances and countries.
This paper first examines the evolution of mobile phone coverage and adoption in sub-Saharan Africa over the past decade. We then explore the main channels through which mobile phones can effect economic outcomes and appraise current evidence of its potential to improve economic development. We conclude with directions for future research and outline the necessary conditions for mobile phones to promote broader economic development in Africa.
Article Full-Text Access Full-text Article (Complimentary)
Aker, Jenny C. (Tufts U and Center for Global Development, Washington, DC)
Mbiti, Isaac M. (Southern Methodist U)
JEL Classifications

H54: National Government Expenditures and Related Policies: Infrastructures; Other Public Investment and Capital Stock
L96: Telecommunications
O11: Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
O17: Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
O33: Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes