'Telecom services are recovering more slowly than the economy as a whole,' says analyst

Mobile users to top 8bn by 2019; telecoms revenue to hit £1.1tn

The number of mobile customers worldwide will exceed eight billion by the end of 2018, an analyst has said.

IDATE stated that the number of mobile users is set to grow by over 21 per cent in the next five years, hitting eight billion by 2019.

In the UK alone, the total number of mobile users is expected to rise from 85.3 million in 2013 to 86.6 million in 2018.

It added that the number of fixed internet subscribers is also set to grow, albeit more slowly – while an increase of 18 per cent is expected between 2013 and 2018, the firm said that the one billion mark would not be reached until after 2020.

The predictions come as part of IDATE’s world telecom services watch.

The report additionally forecasted that global telecom services revenue will rise from €1.19 trillion (£0.95tn) in 2013 to €1.34 trillion (£1.1tn) in 2018 – fuelled by an average annual growth of 2.5 per cent.

The report said that traditional landlines were continuing to lose ground as VoIP and mobiles expand in popularity.

Mobile service revenue makes up the bulk of total telecom revenue, with the sector expected to reach €826 billion (£660bn) by 2018 – a growth of 17 per cent in five years.

Internet access and data will also play a big part, growing by 24 per cent to reach €338 billion (£270bn) in 2018.

“We have observed that, by and large, telecom services are recovering more slowly than the economy as a whole,” said Didier Pouillot, head of IDATE’s telecom players and markets business unit.

Image of smartphones courtesy of Shutterstock.co.uk

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