GENEVA, SWITZERLAND: The UMTS Forum has welcomed a new report from Europe’s telecoms administrations as a significant milestone in the evolution of mobile broadband.
Published by the Electronic Communications Committee (ECC) within the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT), the new report surveys the global mobile broadband landscape while forecasting its future.
Launched in September 2011, CEPT ECC PT1 Internal Report on Mobile Broadband Landscape highlights continuing traffic growth in data-oriented networks, driven by more powerful end-user devices and richer service offerings. The report explicitly considers licenced mobile broadband systems: Wi-Fi in public and private environments is excluded from the study’s terms of reference.
Specifically, the CEPT report states that previous forecasts have greatly underestimated the growth of mobile data traffic. As a consequence of this, argues CEPT, “there is a need to review the spectrum estimates due to the traffic predictions showing faster growth than estimated before”.
As well as stimulating innovative new services and applications, CEPT argues that additional spectrum resources will stimulate competition in mobile broadband landscape to the benefit of consumers.
Among other studies, the CEPT report cites the UMTS Forum’s own predictions [UMTS Forum report 44, “Mobile traffic forecasts 2010-2020”, January 2011] that estimates subscriptions and data consumption trends globally, and in particular for a typical Western European country. In the space of a decade, states the UMTS Forum, total daily mobile traffic in such country will grow almost 70 times, from around 185 Terabytes to more than 12500 Terabytes.
The UMTS Forum is supporting full availability of all spectrum that is already identified for IMT. At the upcoming World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-12) – taking place in Geneva from January 2012 – the UMTS Forum is supporting an Agenda Item for the next conference in 2015 (WRC-15) to respond to ever-increasing mobile broadband traffic demand in a harmonised way, through the identification of spectrum for International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT).
In parallel with the CEPT study, the UMTS Forum has also welcomed imminent delivery of another major Report recently finalised within ITU-R (currently named ‘IMT.UPDATE’) that maps future mobile broadband trends in the context of recent trends and studies. The report assesses global mobile broadband deployments and forecasts for IMT, and is targeted to be approved by ITU-R Study Group 5 in November 2011. Like the CEPT study, this new ITU-R report cites forecasts by the UMTS Forum that anticipate global mobile traffic of more than 127 Exabytes in 2020 – 33 times more than comparable figures in 2010.