GSMA published their latest mobile report at the MWC19 this week. According to the report, by the end of 2018, 5.1 billion people around the world subscribed to mobile services, accounting for 67% of the global population.
The report described how 5G is now upon us, bringing with it the promise of a host of exciting new services. As the boundaries between mobile and the wider digital ecosystem continue to blur, and as data monetisation poses a continued challenge, many operators are moving beyond their traditional telco businesses to explore new opportunities in a fast-changing competitive landscape.
The report predicts that between 2018 and 2025, the number of global IoT connections will triple to 25 billion, while global IoT revenue will quadruple to £0.83 trillion. With connectivity becoming increasingly commoditised, mobile operators are looking to expand their role in the value chain – from providing essential tools and capabilities for ecosystem partners to build IoT solutions, to becoming end-to-end IoT solution providers themselves.
The report suggests that although smartphones will remain the focal point of the consumer internet economy, the range of connected devices (and therefore internet access channels) is greater than ever. In the most advanced countries, today’s digital consumers (using PCs and smartphones) will likely become tomorrow’s augmented customers, adopting emerging technologies such as AI (via smart speakers) and immersive reality.