As smartphone penetration continues to grow, average mobile users will consume more than eight times as much social media and 14 times more megabytes of applications by 2016, according to a new report from Informa Telecoms & Media.
The report’s findings have significant implications for both wireless carriers and marketers and underscore the difficulties both face in monetizing mobile. Over the next five years, Informa forecasts that mobile data traffic will grow from 3.89 trillion megabytes in 2011 to 39.75 trillion megabytes in 2016 - a tenfold increase - while mobile data revenues will nearly double from $325.8 billion to $627.5 billion during the same period.
“The main implications for wireless carriers is that mobile traffic will grow tenfold globally over the next five years, but that the revenue generated directly from mobile users will only grow twofold,” said Guillermo Escofet, London-based senior analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media’s Mobile Content & Applications Intelligence Centre
“Carriers should focus on their core asset, their networks, to ensure they can cope with the oncoming data tsunami,” he said. “And also ensure that they secure themselves a role as enablers in the rapidly growing mobile apps ecosystem through network assets such as carrier billing.