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Mobile Data Revenues See Growth

Posted: 27th Apr, 2005 By: MarkJ
Globally, mobile phone operators can expect to see the level of revenues contributed by data traffic rise from 12% in 2005 ($71bn) to 18% in 2010 ($124bn):

Operators have seen steadily declining voice revenues year on year caused by an increasingly competitive marketplace, coupled with an increasingly demanding subscriber base. It is expected that over the next five years this decline in voice ARPU will be offset somewhat by data revenues as operators finally start to realise the potential of the huge investments they made in mobile data networks.

“We’re going to be seeing significant revenue growth driven by an uptake in wireless enterprise services, as well as strong results from the entertainment segment” said Daniel Winterbottom, co-author of the report. “We expect that the number of mobile video users will see more than a five-fold increase over the forecast period but the most dynamic level of growth will come from gaming, with more than 458m users expected worldwide by 2010”.

Person to person messaging currently represents the largest proportion of an operator’s data revenues, and by 2010 will contribute in excess of US$87bn to their coffers. However, the commoditisation of SMS services will lead to an erosion of the profits made on them that operators can ill-afford to lose. The uptake of MMS messaging has been slow in all marketsand it is expected that revenues from picture messaging will be less than 50% of SMS by 2010.

“There has been a distinct lack of buy-in by consumers to MMS services, caused by their relative expense, plus a lack of compelling handsets in some regions”, said Richard Jesty, senior consultant at Informa Telecoms and Media. “Further to this, operators have had underlying network issues that have meant that customers have been less than satisfied with their experience of MMS services”, he added.
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