33x Growth in Mobile Traffic expected by 2020

Based on a report produced by IDATE called “Mobile traffic forecasts 2010-2020“, the UMTS forum has shown a series of forecasts regarding mobile traffic evolution in the next decade. The report is available to full members only.

The report suggests that the global mobile network traffic will increase by 33x over the next ten years, thus reaching 127 EB in 2020. Forecasts are made in the mobile network licensed spectrum.

The strongest growth will take place in Europe and the West European mobile traffic will increase by 67 times to reach about 12,540 TB everyday. As for mobile voice traffic, its growth won’t vary much.

Other trends forecasted for the 2010-2020 period are:

  • Sales for Tablets, Smartphones, M2Ms, dongles etc will grow.
  • Social Networking traffic will increase and create new patterns of consumption.
  • TV consumption will grow and video will become the main traffic engine in streaming and downloads.

The report is based on previous studies analyzing smartphone and social networking via mobile devices. It shows similar conclusions to the 2005 UMTS Forum that predicted a 27x growth when app stores and smartphone and 3G dongles had not reached mass availability.

Jean-Pierre Bienaimé, UMTS Forum Chairman says that the report reflects “ever-increasing consumer demand for mobile broadband services“. He adds that the report is useful when it comes to discussing sufficient spectrum availability able to support the growth.

“Mobile traffic forecasts 2010-2020″ will be one of the key elements at the World Radio communication Conferences to come where radio-frequency spectrum regulations are discussed.

UMTS Forum Chairman also stated that the effort the International Telecommunication Union has made in the International Mobile Telecommunication which led to the mobile broadband success, would have to continue so as to create ITU-R framework changes able to meet traffic demand in the next decade.