Europe will have five million mobile broadband connections by the end of this year according to a Swedish analyst firm.
Berg-Insight said in its report that the countries signing up for high-speed HSDPA mobile Internet fastest are Austria and Sweden. It predicts that by 2011, European mobile broadband connections will have reached 30 million.
It points to the coincidence of HSDPA’s arrival and falling price of mobile handset and Internet access as the reason for rising use.
"Mobile operators like 3, A1 Mobilkom and Telenor are getting this right," said senior analyst Tobias Ryberg last week. "Ordinary people have already replaced their old bulky desktop PC with a new, slim, widescreen notebook. Now, thanks to HSDPA, they can also connect to the Internet anywhere for just €20 (£13.50) per month."
Berg Insight also predicted that the European mobile market would be worth £2 billion in five years time. Last year, the market as a whole was worth £742 million.
It also predicted that the emergence of HSPA+ in 2009 could signal a revolution in content and handset design as wireless speeds approach 42.5Mbit download and 11.5Mbit upload.
The increased speed and availability of high-speed Internet connections via mobile phones could see people move away from fixed-line broadband towards the portability of their mobiles, especially as the move towards using laptops increases