The latest mobile subscriber forecasts from ABI Research show that worldwide GSM subscriber growth is slowing and is expected to stop by the middle of next year. However, 3G subscriptions are increasing, with 2009 seeing year-on-year mobile broadband growth of 43%. At the end of December 2009, there were 271 million mobile broadband subscribers worldwide.
Overall, global cellular subscription numbers passed 4.35 billion at the end of 2009, a 10.4% increase from 2008. Global cellular penetration is now estimated to be 66% – although this varies between 140% in Western Europe, 93% in North America and 52.5% in the Asia-Pacific region.
A global study of internet users commissioned by Nokia Siemens Networks has shown that mobile broadband users are up to 22% less satisfied with their connectivity when compared to fixed broadband.
Almost 11,000 interviews were carried out in 15 countries; the results showed that mobile device users were overall 13% less satisfied than fixed-line broadband users. However, mobile users were 14% less satisfied with the speed that websites opened, 16% less satisfied with the stability of their connection, 17% less satisfied with download speeds, 18% less satisfied with upload speeds and 22% less satisfied with the quality of streamed video or TV services.