Registering the highest growth globally in addition of mobile subscribers, India accounted for over 23 per cent of total mobile users added in January-March this year, a report by telecom equipment giant Ericsson said today.
India added over 28 million new mobile subscriptions -- -- the highest by any country -- in the first quarter of 2014, followed by China (more than 19 million), Indonesia (over 7 million), Thailand (more than 6 million) and Bangladesh (over four million), Ericsson's Mobility Report said.
"The top 5 countries by net additions accounted for more than 50 per cent of new mobile subscriptions in Q1 2014," the report said.
Total mobile subscriptions in Q1 2014 were around 6.8 billion, including addition of 120 million new subscriptions during the first quarter, it added.
Global mobile subscriptions have continued to grow 7 per cent year-on-year and 2 per cent quarter-on-quarter. Global mobile penetration reached 93 per cent in Q1 2014, the report said.
"Next year the total number of mobile subscriptions will exceed the world’s population. Mobile subscriptions have grown by 7 per cent y-o-y, with 120 million net additions in Q1 alone," it added.
Mobile broadband subscriptions also continue to grow and will reach 7.6 billion by the end of 2019, representing more than 80 per cent of total mobile subscriptions.
By 2016, number of smartphone subscriptions will exceed those for basic phones and by 2019 the number of smartphone subscriptions is expected to reach 5.6 billion, Ericsson said in the report.
Sixty-five per cent of all phones sold in Q1 2014 were smartphones. Compared to today, a smartphone user in 2019 is expected to consume almost four times the amount of mobile data per month.
"Growth and the evolution in M2M and the 10-fold growth in mobile data traffic strengthens the emphasis on network performance, handling complexity and maximising user experience," Ericsson Senior VP and Chief Strategy officer Rima Qureshi said.
This in turn puts even higher requirements across the networks and the operations and business support systems of the future, she added.