Home Network Ericsson Ericsson: 7.2 billion mobile subscriptions in Q1 2015, forecast 9.2 billion in...

Ericsson: 7.2 billion mobile subscriptions in Q1 2015, forecast 9.2 billion in 2020

Findings from the latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report, published early this month (June), show the total number of mobile subscriptions in Q1 2015 was around 7.2 billion, including 108 million new subscriptions.


In 2020, Ericsson forecast that mobile subscriptions will reach 9.2 billion while smartphone subscriptions will more than double, reaching 6.1 billion. 70% of the world’s population will be using smartphones, and 90 percent will be covered by mobile broadband networks.

Key figures & findings:


  • By 2016 the number of smartphone subscriptions will surpass those for basic phones.
  • 85 percent of all subscriptions will be for mobile broadband by the end of 2020.
  • Mobile broadband subscriptions will reach 7.7 billion globally by 2020.
  • There will be around 3.8 billion WCDMA/GSM subscriptions by 2020, compared to around 3.7 billion LTE subscriptions.
  • By 2020, monthly smartphone data consumption per active subscription in North America (14 GB) will be 1.5 times that of Western Europe (9.5 GB) and 3.5 times that of Asia Pacific (4 GB). However, the Asia Pacific region will have the largest share of total smartphone traffic in 2020, due to growth in the number of subscriptions.
  • In many mobile networks today, 40–60 percent of video traffic is from YouTube. Mobile video in general is forecast to grow by around 55 percent annually through to 2020, when it will account for around 60% of all mobile data traffic.
  • By 2020, around 90 percent of the world’s population will be covered by mobile broadband networks.
  • 5G subscriptions will be commercially available in 2020, and subscription uptake is expected to be faster than for 4G. This growth will be driven to a large extent by new use cases, especially machine-type communication.
  • By 2020, Japan and South Korea are expected to offer the 1st 5Gb subscriptions in the world.

Mobile Subscriptions in Q1 2015

Global mobile subscriptions are growing by 1.5% quarter-on-quarter and around 5 percent year-on-year. India grew the most in terms of net additions (+26 million), followed by China (+8 million), Myanmar (+5 million), Indonesia (+4 million) and Japan (+4 million).

Global mobile penetration reached 99% in Q1 2015.

Smartphones accounted for close to 75% of all mobile phones sold in Q1 2015, compared to around 65% during Q1 2014. However, around 40% of all mobile phone subscriptions are associated with smartphones, leaving considerable room for further uptake.

There are 2.9 billion mobile broadband subscriptions in Q1 2015, growing globally by around 30% year-on-year, increasing by approximately 150 million in Q1 2015 alone.

4G LTE continues to grow strongly and has reached around 600 million subscriptions, with approximately 105 million additions in Q1 2015. WCDMA/GSM added around 60 million during Q1. The majority of 3G/4G subscriptions have access to GSM/EDGE as a fallback, although GSM/EDGE-only subscriptions declined by 30 million.

The Ericsson Mobility Report shares forecast data, analysis and insight into mobile traffic, subscriptions, and consumer behavior to provide insight into current traffic and market trends in today’s “Networked Society”.

Ericsson regularly performs traffic measurements in over 100 live networks in all major regions of the world. Detailed measurements are made in a selected number of commercial WCDMA/HSPA and 4G LTE networks with the purpose of discovering different traffic patterns.

[Download PDF]– Ericsson Mobility Report (June 2015)
[Download PDF]– Ericsson Mobility Report (June 2015), South East Asia & Oceania

Exit mobile version