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Ericsson Mobility Report November 2012


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We have performed in-depth data traffic measurements since the early days of mobile broadband from a large base of live networks covering all regions of the world.

The aim of this report is to share analysis based on these measurements, internal forecasts and other relevant studies to provide insights into the current traffic and market trends.

We will continue to share traffic and market data, along with our analysis, on a regular basis. We hope you find it engaging and valuable.

Ericsson Mobility Report is the new name for the Ericsson Traffic and Market Report, copies of which can be downloaded on this page.

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Ericsson Mobility Report November 2012

  1. 1. EricssonMobilityReportON THE PULSE OF THE NETWORKED SOCIETYNovember 2012
  2. 2. CONTENTS Mobile subscriptions update 4 Subscriptions outlook 6 Mobile traffic update 9 Traffic development 10 Coverage 12 Speed 14 Video needs mobile 16 The impact of free game apps 18 Traffic mix for applications and devices 20 Tethering 21 Uplink versus downlink traffic volumes 24The contents of this document are based on a number of theoretical dependenciesand assumptions and Ericsson shall not be bound by or liable for any statement,representation, undertaking or omission made in this document. Furthermore Key figures 26Ericsson may at any time change the contents of this document at its solediscretion and shall not be liable for the consequences of such changes. Methodology and glossary 272  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  3. 3. EricssonMobility ReportNovember 2012Traffic in mobile networks continues to grow at an impressive rateworldwide. While voice remains a cornerstone of most operators’ serviceofferings, it is data growth, driven by the uptake of smart devices andapps, which is having the most significant impact on networks globally.In this release, the regular features which track subscriptions and traffic ABOUT THIS REPORThave been updated to reflect our latest measurements and to includeannual forecast numbers to 2018. The updated forecasts are in line with Ericsson has performed in-depthprevious ones, showing continued uptake of both mobile subscriptions data traffic measurements sinceand mobile traffic. the early days of mobile broadband from a large base of live networks covering all regions of the world.The growing availability of mobile broadband has raised userexpectations of mobile network quality. Mobility is integral to our The aim of this report is toeveryday lives. Providing coverage, sufficient quality and speed share analysis based on theseto run apps anywhere and anytime is key. measurements, internal forecasts and other relevant studies to provideThe traffic mix of applications differs between device types, but one insights into the current traffic andcommon finding is that video is the biggest contributor to mobile traffic market trends.volumes. Looking below the surface of our traffic measurements, weprovide a thorough analysis of tethering and the asymmetry of uplink Publisher: Douglas Gilstrap,and downlink volumes in applications. Senior Vice President and Head of Strategy, EricssonFinally, for an overview, check out the key figures section at the end.We hope you find this report engaging and valuable.SUBSCRIPTIONS 6 SPEED 14 TETHERING 219.3 billion mobile Global median Tethering userssubscriptions by smartphone consume up tothe end of 2018. downlink speed 20 times more data is over 1.3 Mbps. traffic than others. NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  3
  4. 4. Mobilesubscriptions updateFigure 1: Mobile subscriptions by region, Q3 2012 6.4 Billion mobile subscriptions globally in Q3 2012 Source: Ericsson (November 2012) Figure 1Mobile subscription figures are estimates as of Q3 2012. Mobile net reports, combined with Ericsson analysis. Historical dataadditions are estimates during Q3 2012. APAC = Asia Pacific. The may be revised when operators report updated figures. Theestimate of mobile net additions has been made based on historic decline in mobile subscriptions for India is due to removalinformation from external sources and regulatory and operator of inactive subscriptions.4  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  5. 5. > Global mobile penetration reached 91 percent in Mobile broadband subscriptions1 have grown Q3 2012 and mobile subscriptions now total around by around 55 percent year-on-year and have 6.4 billion. However, the actual number of subscribers reached above 1.4 billion. is around 4.3 billion, since many have several subscriptions. There is continued strong momentum for smartphone uptake in all regions. Approximately China alone accounted for around 35 percent of net 40 percent of all mobile phones sold in Q3 2012 additions, adding around 38 million subscriptions. were smartphones, compared to around 30 percent for the full year in 2011. Only around 15 percent Brazil (+9 million), Indonesia (+7 million), and the of the worldwide installed base of mobile phone Philippines (+5 million) follow in terms of net additions. subscriptions uses smartphones, which means that there is considerable room for further uptake. The number of mobile subscriptions in India declined by around 18 million in the quarter. The reason is LTE is now growing strongly, with 13 million new an increased focus on active subscriptions, with subscriptions added in Q3 2012. GSM/EDGE the decline coming from the removal of inactive added around 20 million and WCDMA/HSPA subscriptions. around 65 million. Mobile subscriptions have grown by around 9 percent year-on-year and 2 percent quarter-on-quarter.Figure 2: Penetration percentage Q3 2012 Central Eastern Europe 128% Western Europe 127% Latin America 112% Middle East 103% North America 101% APAC excluding China India 96% China 81% India 72% Africa 67% Global penetration 91% Source: Ericsson (November 2012)1 Mobile broadband is defined as CDMA2000 EV-DO, HSPA, LTE, Mobile WiMAX and TD-SCDMA. Subscriptions vs subscribers There is a large difference between the number of before inactive subscriptions are removed from subscriptions and subscribers. This is due to the fact operator databases. Consequently, subscription that many subscribers have several subscriptions. penetration can easily reach above 100 percent, Reasons for this could include users lowering their which is the case in many countries today. It should traffic cost by using optimized subscriptions for however be noted that in some developing regions it is different types of calls, maximizing coverage and common for several people to share one subscription, having different subscriptions for mobile PCs/tablets having for example a family phone. and for mobile phones. In addition, it takes time NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  5
  6. 6. 3Subscriptions Billion smartphoneoutlook subscriptions by the end of 2018By the end of 2012, total mobile subscriptions Figure 3: Fixed and mobile subscriptions 2009-2018will be around 6.6 billion. By the end of 2018, they 10,000are expected to reach 9.3 billion. These figures Source: Ericsson (2012) 9,000do not include M2M subscriptions, which will alsoadd to the number of subscriptions. Global mobile 8,000broadband subscriptions will be around 1.5 billion 7,000 Subscriptions/lines (million)in 2012, and are predicted to reach 6.5 billion in 6,0002018. The majority of devices are, and will continueto be, mobile phones. Mobile broadband will gain 5,000a larger share of total broadband subscriptions 4,000in many markets, complementing xDSL in certainsegments and replacing it in others. Mobile 3,000broadband also includes some feature phones. 2,000 1,000Mobile devices 0Ericsson expects the subscription types 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018associated with large data volumes (such asthose for mobile PCs and smartphones) to exceed Fixed broadband Mobile broadband* Mobile PCs, tablets and mobile routers**4 billion by 2018. This is shown in figure 4. Mobile subscriptionsMobile subscriptions are increasing for PCs, Figure 4: martphone, PC, mobile routers and tablet Smobile routers and tablets that use large screen subscriptions with cellular connection 2009-2018sizes. They are expected to grow from 250 million 5,000in 2012 to around 850 million in 2018, exceeding Source: Ericsson (2012) Mobile PCs, tablets and mobile routersthe number of fixed broadband subscriptions. Smartphones 4,000Total smartphone subscriptions will reach1.1 billion by the end of 2012 and are expected Subscriptions (million)to grow to 3.3 billion in 2018. Today the majority 3,000 9000of mobile subscriptions are for basic phones. 8000Even though smartphone penetration will increase 2,000significantly, we expect subscriptions for basic 7,000phones and inactive subscriptions to stay ataround 5 billion in the coming years. The reason 1,000 6,000for this is that a large part of subscriber growth Subscriptions/lines (million)will come from the lower-end phone segment. 5,0000 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018Regional differences will be large. In 2018 4,000almost all handsets in Western Europe (WE)and North America (NA) will be smartphones, *Mobile broadband: CDMA2000 EV-DO, HSPA, LTE, Mobile WiMAX andcompared with only around one third of 3,000 TD-SCDMA. It includes mobile PCs, tablets, mobile routers and mobilehandsets for Middle East and Africa (MEA) phones including both smartphones and feature phones.and Asia Pacific (APAC). **Mobile PC: laptop or desktop PC devices with built-in cellular modem 2,000 or external USB dongle. Mobile router: A device with a cellular network connection to the internet, and Wi-Fi or ethernet connection to one or several clients (such as PCs and tablets).6  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  7. 7. 9 Billion mobile subscriptions by the end of 2018Mobile technology Figure 5: Mobile subscriptions by technology, 2009-2018Figure 5 illustrates reported mobile 10,000 LTE Source: Ericsson (2012)subscriptions by technology. In this 9,000 WCDMA/HSPAgraph, subscriptions are defined by 8,000 GSM/EDGE Mobile subscriptions (million)the most advanced technology that 7,000 TD-SCDMAthe mobile phone and network are CDMA 6,000capable of. Other 5,000LTE is currently being deployed and 4,000built-out in all regions and will reach 3,000around 1.6 billion subscriptions 2,000in 2018. These subscriptions will 1,000represent the high-end share 0of the total subscriber base by 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 20182018. Rapid migration to moreadvanced technologies in developed Subscriptions are defined by the most advanced technologycountries means global GSM/EDGE that the mobile phone and network are capable of.subscription numbers will declineafter 2012-2013. On a global scale Figure 6: Mobile subscriptions by region, 2009-2018GSM/EDGE will continue to lead 10,000 LAin terms of subscription numbers Source: Ericsson (2012) NA 9,000until the latter years of the forecast APAC 8,000period. This is because new, less Mobile subscriptions (million) MEA 7,000affluent users entering networks in CEEgrowing markets will be likely to use 6,000 WEthe cheapest mobile phones and 5,000subscriptions available. In addition, 4,000it takes time for the installed base 3,000of phones to be upgraded. 2,000 1,000Regional growth 0Figure 6 illustrates mobile 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018subscriptions in each region up untilthe end of 2018 and is characterizedby continued growth in all regions. InAPAC this growth is primarily drivenby new subscribers. On the other hand,overall North American subscription growthis based on multiple subscriptions perindividual – for example, adding a tablet.The number of fixed broadband users is at least three times the that the usage trend for mobile PCs will be similar to fixed broadbandnumber of fixed broadband connections, due to multiple usage in usage today, with several users per subscription. This is especiallyhouseholds, enterprises and public access spots. This is the opposite the case in developing markets where mobile access will be theof the mobile phone situation, where subscription numbers exceed main source of internet connection.user numbers. In the latter years of the forecasting period, it is likely NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  7
  8. 8. Regional technology maturity Figure 7: Mobile subscriptions by technology and region 2012Different maturity levels between 100% LTEregions are reflected in their radio WCDMA/HSPAtechnology mix. Less mature regions 80% GSM/EDGEare dominated by 2G technologies, TD-SCDMAlike GSM/EDGE, while more mature CDMAregions like Western Europe are 60% Otherdominated by HSPA. LTE is growing Source:very strongly, particularly in Ericsson (2012) 40%North America.North America is characterized by 20%early growth in LTE, which will makeLTE the dominant technology in 2018. 0GSM/EDGE-only subscriptions will NA LA WE CEE MEA APACvirtually be no longer present. Thefast growth in LTE subscriptions isdriven by strong competition and Subscriptions are defined by the most advanced technology that the mobile phone and network are capable of.consumer demand, following CDMAoperators’ early decisions to migrate Figure 8: Mobile subscriptions by technology and region 2018to LTE. 100% LTELatin America (LA) has a large 100 WCDMA/HSPA LTEGSM/EDGE subscriber base. The GSM/EDGE 80% WCDMA/HSPAstrong growth in subscriptions in TD-SCDMA GSM/EDGE 80this region will be driven by economic CDMA TD-SCDMAdevelopment and consumer demand. 60% Other CDMAIn 2018, WCDMA/HSPA will be the 60 Other Source:dominant technology, however Ericsson (2012) % 40%GSM/EDGE-only subscriptionswill still have a significant presence. 40 20%As a mature market, Western Europe 20will show little subscriptions growthin the years to come. What growth 0% NA LA WE CEE MEA APACthere is will come from an increasing 0number of connected devices. NA WE APAC LA CEMAHSPA is the dominant technologyin 2012. By 2018, LTE is expected tohave penetrated around 30 percentof the subscriptions base in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) shows a strong increaseWestern Europe. in HSPA subscriptions. LTE will initially grow in the most 100 developed parts of the region, and will be present in most LTEThe Asia Pacific market continues countries by 2018. WCDMA/HSPAto see a massive increase in GSM/EDGEsubscriptions. Markets like Japan and 80 The Middle East and Africa is dominated by GSM/EDGE TD-SCDMAKorea will take up LTE subscriptions in 2012. By 2018 it will be the region with the largest CDMAvery early compared to late uptake share of GSM/EDGE, driven by a demand for low cost 60 Otherin less developed countries. China telephones. However, the region is diverse, so there will be %will add substantial LTE subscriptions large differences between highly developed areas and lessin the latter years. 40 developed areas. 208  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012 0 NA WE APAC LA CEMA
  9. 9. Mobile 2xtraffic update mobile Data traffic doubled between Q3 2011 and Q3 2012Global traffic in mobile networks Figure 9: Global total traffic in mobile networks, 2007-2012Figure 9 shows the total monthly traffic 1,000split for voice and data. It depicts a Source: Ericsson (2012) Voice Datastable trend of data traffic growth withsome seasonal variations. Mobile data Total (uplink + downlink) monthly traffic (PetaBytes)subscriptions will grow strongly, and 800drive the growth in data traffic alongwith a continuous increase in the averagedata volumes per subscription. 600Mobile voice traffic continues to growat a steady rate, mainly driven by newsubscriptions in Asia Pacific and Middle 400East Africa. Highlights include: Data traffic doubled between 200 Q3 2011 and Q3 2012 uarterly growth between Q2 2012 Q and Q3 2012 was 16 percent 0It should be noted that there are big Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3differences in traffic levels between 07 07 07 07 08 08 08 08 09 09 09 09 10 10 10 10 11 11 11 11 12 12 12markets, regions and operators.These measurements have beenperformed by Ericsson over several 800years using a large base of commercial Voice Datanetworks that together cover all regions 700of the world. They form a representative Total (uplink + downlink) monthly traffic (PetaByte/month)base for calculating world total traffic in 600mobile networks2. 500 400 300 200 100 0 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q22 Traffic does not include DVB-H, Wi-Fi, or Mobile WiMax. 07 07 07 07 08 08 08 08 09 09 09 09 10 10 10 10 11 11 11 11 12 12 NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  9
  10. 10. 12xTraffic Mobile data trafficdevelopment will grow ~12 times between 2012 and 2018Traffic outlook Figure 10: Global mobile traffic: voice and data 2010-2018 15,000In 2012, overall mobile data traffic is expected to Source: Ericsson (2012)continue the trend of doubling each year. Today,mobile PCs dominate traffic in most regions, 12,000 Monthly PetaBytes (1015 B)except in North America. However, smartphone Data: mobile PCs, tablets and mobile routerstraffic is growing faster due to the high growth in 9,000 Data: mobile phonessubscriptions. In the latter years of the forecast Voiceperiod, data traffic will be split fairly equally 6,000between mobile phones on one hand and mobilePCs, tablets and mobile routers on the other. 3,000Mobile data traffic will grow considerably faster 0than fixed data traffic over the forecast period. 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018However, in absolute volume, fixed data trafficwill remain dominant over the same period. Figure 11: Global fixed traffic 2010-2018Accessing the internet from mobile devices will 150,000 Source: Ericsson (2012)drive mobile traffic development. Mobile datatraffic is expected to grow with a CAGR of around 120,000 Monthly PetaBytes (1015 B)50 percent (2012-2018), driven mainly by video.This entails growth of around 12 times by the 90,000end of 2018. 60,000Traffic per subscriber is partly affectedby the screen size of the user’s individual 30,000device. Resolution is also a factor, with recentsmartphones closing in on PC-level quality. On 0average, a mobile PC generates approximately 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018seven times more traffic than a smartphone. Bythe end of 2012, an average mobile PC generated Figure 12: martphone and mobile PC traffic per month Sapproximately 3 GB per month, versus 450 MB and subscription 2012 and 2018per month produced by the average smartphone. 12,000By the end of 2018, it is estimated that a mobile Source: Ericsson (2012)PC will generate over 10 GB per month, and asmartphone around 2 GB. Note that there are large 10,000 Smartphonesdifferences between user patterns on different Mobile PCs MB/month/subscriptionnetworks, markets and user types. 8,000 6,000 150,000 Data: 4,000 Mobile data traffic mobile PCs/t Mobile data traffic is a share of total Data: 2,000 120,000 mobile phone traffic. It represents four percent in Voice 2012 and nine percent in 2018. Monthly PetaBytes (1015 B) 0 90,000 2012 201810  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012 60,000
  11. 11. 14x Mobile data traffic for smartphones will grow ~14 times between 2012 and 2018Regional mobile traffic variations Figure 13: Mobile traffic by region and type, 2012By looking at each region in figure 13 100% Voiceand comparing the traffic generated from Data: mobile PCs, tablets and mobile routersdifferent device types, we can see the 80% Data: mobile phonesdiverse maturity levels between regions. Source: Ericsson (2012)As illustrated in figure 14, Asia Pacific 60%had the largest share of the total trafficin 2012. North America and Western 40%Europe have a significantly largershare of total traffic volume than theirsubscription numbers alone would imply. 20%This is due to the high penetration of3G/4G networks, as well as that of PCs, 0%smartphones and tablets. NA LA WE CEMA APACData traffic has doubled in 2012 and will Figure 14: Mobile traffic share by region, 2012continue to grow at a high rate, whereasvoice traffic will maintain moderate singledigit growth per annum. In other words, APAC NAby 2018, voice traffic volumes in all WEregions will be very small compared CEMAto data traffic. LAAs seen in figures 14 and 15, Asia Pacific Source: Ericsson (2012)is expected to increase its share of theglobal volume from around one thirdtoday to almost 40 percent in 2018. Figure 15: Mobile traffic share by region, 2018 APAC NA Traffic WE CEMA management impact LA Note that a large part of data traffic is generated by a limited number Source: Ericsson (2012) of users in each device category. These users may considerably change their usage if operators implement data volume caps or other traffic management schemes. Measures like this could significantly impact the traffic forecast. Traffic refers to aggregated traffic in mobile access networks. DVB-H and Mobile WiMax or Wi-Fi traffic have not been included. M2M traffic is not included. NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  11
  12. 12. By 2017, APAC will account for twoCoverage thirds of all LTE population coverageCoverage of the world’s mobile networks is Figure 16: Population coverage, 2011 and 2017constantly increasing as more base stations 100are deployed. GSM/EDGE technology has by 90% Source: Ericsson (2012) 85% 85%far the widest reach and today covers morethan 85 percent of the world’s population. 80 Rural World population distributionGeographically, only sparsely populatedareas remain to be covered by GSM/EDGE. % population coverage 60 50%WCDMA/HSPA covered more than 45 percent 45% Sub- urbanof the world’s population in 2011 and now 40covers more than 50 percent. Further build-out of WCDMA/HSPA population coverage 20 Urbanwill be driven by a number of factors includingincreased user demand for internet access, 5% Metrothe increasing affordability of smartphones 0and regulatory requirements to connect 2011 2017 2011 2017 2011 2017the unconnected. By 2017, an estimated GSM/EDGE WCDMA/HSPA LTE85 percent of the world’s population willhave the opportunity to access the internetusing WCDMA/HSPA networks3. Figure 17: APAC population coverage, 2011 and 2017APAC population coverage 100 90% 90% Source: Ericsson (2012)APAC represents a large share of the global 85%population. It is therefore interesting to study 80 Ruralthis region’s current and forecasted build-out. World population distribution % population coverage 60%GSM’s population coverage in APAC last year 60and its subsequent forecast for 2017 closely 50% Sub-mirror the overall global situation. urban 40The WCDMA/HSPA population coverageis higher in APAC than the global average. 20 UrbanIt is estimated that by 2017, 90 percent ofthe population will be covered by 1.5% MetroWCDMA/HSPA networks. 0 2011 2017 2011 2017 2011 2017Japan, Korea and Australia are early adopters GSM/EDGE WCDMA/HSPA LTEof LTE in APAC. It is forecasted that LTEpopulation coverage in APAC will increaseto 60 percent by 2017, surpassing the globalaverage of 50 percent in the same year. By2017 APAC will account for around two thirdsof the world’s LTE population coverage. The figures refer to population coverage of each technology. The ability to utilize the technology is subject to other factors, such as access3 to devices and subscriptions.12  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  13. 13. 455 MILLION Global LTE population coverage by mid 2012WCDMA/HSPA networks Figure 18: ercentage of WCDMA networks upgraded P to HSPA and to 7.2, 21 and 42 MbpsThe WCDMA/HSPA networks that currently provide 100%coverage to more than half of the world’s population Source: Ericsson and GSA (Q3 2012)support various speeds. All WCDMA networksdeployed worldwide have been upgraded with HSPA. 80%Around 75 percent of HSPA networks have beenupgraded to a peak downlink speed of 7.2 Mbpsor above and approximately 50 percent have been 60%upgraded to 21 Mbps or higher. 40%Around 20 percent of HSPA networks now have speedsof up to 42 Mbps in whole or parts of the networkfollowing a wave of upgrades. We are already seeing 20%evolutionary steps towards speeds of over 100 Mbps. 0%LTE network rollout HSPA HSPA 7.2 HSPA 21 HSPA 42Despite being in the early days of rollout, LTE networkscan already provide downlink peak rates of around100 Mbps, with current standardization allowing foreven higher speeds. Today, peak speeds experiencedby users are often limited by device capabilities. Theevolution of LTE, also referred to as LTE-Advanced,enables peak data rates exceeding 1 Gbps.LTE is being deployed in a variety of new and existingspectrum bands and supports both Frequency-DivisionDuplex (FDD) and Time-Division Duplex (TDD). It alsosupports flexible carrier bandwidths from 1.4 MHz upto 20 MHz.There are around 100 LTE networks in commercialoperation today. LTE is the fastest developing system inthe history of mobile communication. By mid-2012, LTEwas estimated to cover 455 million people globally andby 2017 it is expected to cover around 50 percent ofthe world’s population. NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  13
  14. 14. SpeedGrowing expectations and frequent users. Together, coverage and speed form the most important network quality satisfactionThe growing availability of mobile broadband has determinants for users. There are numerous additionalraised customer expectations of mobile network factors that have an impact on how users experiencequality. These expectations are further fueled by smart network quality. These include capacity, latency andmobile devices that have enabled new user behavior. battery life, to mention just a few.The mobile internet experience is becoming morepervasive and instrumental to the lives of private Speed is not determined solely by the network – otherand business users alike. factors must be taken into consideration, including device capabilities and user behavior.Users across the world tend to have fairly commonexpectations of their mobile broadband experience. The diagram below shows how the distance betweenProviding ubiquitous coverage is an important factor the base station and the cell edge also affects achieving positive user experience for both casual 42 ~70% distance Cell edge Downlink data rates Mbps from base station 21 Mbps 7.2 Mbps 50% of the coverage area 50% of the coverage area Source: Ericsson (2012)The diagram above illustrates how downlink speeds decline as radio signal strength is transmitted over a cell. The Y axis(data rate) shows downlink speeds and the X axis shows distance relative to the cell edge. Each of the three curves plot speedsfor evolutionary steps of HSPA. It should be kept in mind that approximately 70 percent of the distance to the cell edge correspondsto 50 percent of the coverage area. ‘Cell edge’ refers to where there is typically a handover to an adjacent cell. app is a useful source of data to data from all tests run using the app, including understand the smartphone user experience. Network downlink, uplink, latency, location, time, network users can download the free app and run it to get an and device model. The result is a growing database indication of the performance they are experiencing which has accumulated more than 250 million at a particular time and place. collects records to date.14  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  15. 15. Speed limitations The measurements are taken from both iOS and Android terminals, on a variety of cellular technologiesThe speed that a user experiences is not only limited including GSM/EDGE, WCDMA/HSPA, LTE and the network – the device being used also has animpact. For example, if a user connects to a network The increase in speed during this timeframe is largelycapable of 42 Mbps with a handset that is limited to attributable to three factors:7.2 Mbps, then a speed of no more than 7.2 Mbpscan be achieved. Improved coverage of WCDMA/HSPA – hence an increasing proportion of measurements onA recent drive test performed in a major northern 3G networksEuropean city showed median downlink speeds of11 Mbps. This test was performed on a dual carrier etwork upgrades, both 2G and 3G, enabling Nnetwork capable of 42 Mbps using a state-of-the- higher speedsart dongle capable of handling 42 Mbps. The results Handset and terminal developments and theindicate that an HSPA network can deliver higher increased penetration of devices capablespeeds when not limited by device capabilities. of higher speedsDownlink speed trend It is important to point out that there are already networks that provide a median speed of more thanUsing data from, figure 19 plots the three times the global median. This indicates what themedian global downlink speed for smartphones from near future holds in terms of speed increases in mobilethe first half of 2010 until the first half of 2012. Over networks. Service providers are now faced with thethis time, the speed has increased approximately challenge of providing users with sufficient quality70 percent to 1.3 Mbps. These figures are based on a and coverage to run their chosen apps anywheresample of more than 170 million smartphones globally. and anytime. Figure 19: Global median downlink speeds for smartphones 1.5 1.3 Source: Based on Ericsson’s analysis of results provided by Oookla (2012) Mbps 1.2 Global median smartphone downlink speedMbps is over 1.3 Mbps 0.9 0.6 Jan 2010- Jul 2010- Jan 2011- Jul 2011- Jan 2012- Jun 2010 Dec 2010 Jun 2011 Dec 2011 Jun 2012 Heterogeneous networks Improvements to coverage and speed in metro the macro layer, as well as adding small cells. and urban areas are key to meeting the demand Ericsson has projected that by 2017 each urban for improved user experience. One way of meeting or metro macro sector will be complemented by 1.5 this demand is the deployment of heterogeneous an average of 3 small cells. networks. This involves improving and densifying 1.2 NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  15Kbps
  16. 16. VIDEO needs mobileSocial networking while Figure 20: hich of the following activities do you do at the same time W as you are watching TV/video content at least once per week?watching video and TVThe smartphone is always within arm’s Source: Ericsson ConsumerLab (2012)reach, allowing us instant access toinformation, entertainment and social Browse internetinteraction. In fact, using social media onmobile devices has become an activity Use social forums or blogswhich consumers continuously engage in (e.g. Facebook, Twitter)throughout the whole day. Furthermore,it has begun to influence and merge with Chat (e.g. MSN, Skype, 2011 Facebook chat) 2012other behaviors, such as watching TVand other video content. Consumers 0 20 40 60 80 100don’t simply stop using Facebook or % of usersTwitter just because they have sat downin front of the TV. The two activities are Base: China, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, UK, USinstead done in parallel or even mergedinto a new kind of behavior. Figure 21: ow often do you use social forums, chats (voice or text), etc. H to discuss TV or video content at the same time as watching it?Mobile devices, such Browse internetas the smartphone, are At least dailybecoming a natural part Talk with others in the same room At least weekly Several times per monthof the video experience 25% 22% Monthly or less often Eat in front of the TV Never/don’t knowThe Ericsson ConsumerLab TV and Source: EricssonVideo Report 2012 shows that more than 20% ConsumerLab (2012) Use social forums17% or blogs80 percent of respondents browse the (e.g. Facebook, Twitter)internet while watching video and TV. 16%More than 60 percent use social forums Chat (e.g. MSN, Skype, 2011or blogs while watching video and TV Facebook chat) 2012on a weekly basis. Out of those who Base: China, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, UK, US (those who use 0 20 40 60 80 100use social forums and chats while social forums, blogs or chats while watching TV on a monthly basis)watching, 42 percent are, on a weeklybasis, actually discussing the thingsthey are currently watching.Watching different kinds of video contenthas always been a social activity. Whatwe are seeing now is an increased useof social media while watching TV, Social behaviors enhance the overall TV and video experience, makingespecially when there is nobody it worth more. Over 30 percent of respondents say they are more likelyelse to talk to in the same room. to pay for content that they watch in a social context.16  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  17. 17. Multitasking video behavior Figure 22: ow many hours per week do you actively watch TV or other video H content on the following screens, both at home and away from home?This kind of multitasking behavior isincreasing because of the availability Source: Ericsson ConsumerLab (2012)of different easy-to-use mobile devices TV screensuch as smartphones, laptops andtablets. Almost 60 percent of people Desktop computerwho use social forums or chatswhile watching video and TV say they Laptopdo so using a laptop, while 54 percent Smartphonesay they use a smartphone. TabletMobile devices increasinglyimportant to the video experience Portable video playerMobile devices, such as the smartphone, In homeare becoming a natural part of the Other screen Out of homethe video and TV experience. Many 0 5 10 15 20consumers state that their different Hours per weekmobile devices have actually begunreplacing their secondary TV screens Base: All 12 markets – have and use the device specifiedaround the home. Consumers are alreadyusing their laptops, smartphones andtablets to watch content in kitchens and Anytime, any place, any contentbedrooms, despite not having thrown out The amount of time spent using mobile devices is increasing. Thesecondary TVs from these rooms. The majority of the video and TV consumption on these mobile devices ismain reason for this is that these devices still conducted in the home. The smartphone is an exception as almostare already connected and can easily 50 percent of the time spent watching TV and video is done outside theaccess the things people want to watch. home, where mobile broadband connections are facilitating the increase.While the main TV is still the preferred Almost 40 percent of those who have a laptop, smartphone or tabletscreen for TV and video consumption, watch TV or video outside the home on a weekly basis. TV and videomobile devices are being used more and are finally becoming anytime, any place and any content experiences.more, partly due to the fact that theyhave time shift functionality and canconnect to the internet.TV and video is therefore no longersomething that is consumed strictlyon the TV screen inside the home.It is becoming device-independentand more interactive. Consumers are Almost half of the timeusing several different devices for spent watching video andwatching and expanding the video TV on a smartphone is nowand TV experience. done outside the home The ConsumerLab TV video report 2012 ConsumerLab’s research is based on qualitative and markets that have been studied from the first year quantitative studies. It consists of qualitative in-home of the research (China, Germany, Spain, Sweden, interviews in the US and in Sweden, combined with Taiwan, UK and US). All respondents were between 12,000 online interviews (1,000 per country) in the 16-59 years old and watch some type of TV or video US, UK, China, Spain, Sweden, Brazil, Taiwan, South at least weekly and have a broadband connection Korea, Germany, Mexico, Chile and Italy. The results at home. The research represents more than showing trends across several years are all based on 460 million consumers. NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  17
  18. 18. THE IMPACT OFFREE GAME APPSThe growth of smartphones has been tremendous, Figure 23: omparison of data volume usage for C a game sessionfuelled by users’ growing appetite for internet accessand for using apps. This has created an app industry 250 Source: Ericsson (2012)with an increasing number of developers and users. 220 kBThis industry is centred around two models – either the Uplink + downlink data volume (kB) 200user purchases the premium version upfront or they Multi-player gamechoose the free version and receive advertisements. Single-player gameIn some free apps the user is even required to click 150 140 kBthe link in the advertisement to continue using it.Versions that mix the two also exist. These areknown as freemium. 100The advertisements in the free 50version of an app lead to higher 12 kB 1.3 kB 0data volumes and an increased Premium app Free appnumber of requests to access Data volume measurement based on a typical game sessionthe network lasting between 10 and 15 minutes for each game. Only data traffic from the game is measured, clicks on advertisements are not included.Free vs premiumEricsson has measured the impact from the free The multi-player app is a game played over theversion compared to the premium version of the network and over a longer period of time. After everysame app. The study looked at different factors of the turn it waits for each player to make a move. The gameoperator and the user, comparing data usage, network communicates over the network in both the free andaccess and smartphone battery consumption. The premium versions, making updates after each has not examined the added traffic from In the free version advertisements are delivered forclicking on the link in the advertisement. each new game and after each move.For the analysis two highly popular game apps for Impact on users and networksAndroid were measured – a single-player game Advertising in apps leads to higher data volumes.and a multi-player game. The single-player app is Figure 23 shows that for a typical game session bothcharacterized by short sessions with new levels being of the free versions increase the data volumes dueadded constantly. The game, both in the free and to advertisements. The data volumes are relativelypremium versions, is stored and executed locally limited and manageable for the operator. However,on the smartphone, with limited need to exchange for the user, this background traffic could lead togame information over the network. In the free extra charges, which could even exceed the cost ofversion advertisements are delivered for every the premium version of the app. Examples of suchnew level played. situations include roaming or hitting extra tariffs when exceeding data plan quotas.18  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  19. 19. free versions of single- player games generally cause Increased battery consumptionThe different characteristics of the games create Figure 24: etwork access requests over time for free version N of single-player game (with ads)different needs when requesting network access,such as requests for a data channel. This has Source: Ericsson (2012)been measured over a period of time and theresult for the free version can be seen in figure24. The premium app had only one networkaccess request, at the beginning of the timeperiod. The free single-player game shows an 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800increase of 30 times in the number of requests to Secondsaccess the network compared with the premium Premiumversion. This increase will have an effect on thenetwork load, with a potential need for additionalnetwork capacity. This is especially true when 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800taking into consideration the popularity of apps, Secondsboth in terms of user numbers and frequency ofusage. The multiplayer game creates only a minorincrease of network access requests in both thefree and premium versions. This is because theadvertisement is reusing the network accessneeded to exchange game information.The battery consumption of the smartphone isdirectly and negatively impacted by increasednetwork access requests. The advertisementsin the free single-player game increased batteryconsumption by 25 percent compared with thepremium version. This is based on the gamesession measured. The measurement for themulti-player game shows no significant increasein battery consumption. The app, free or premiumversion, needs to update game information andtherefore will still need to request a connection.The characteristics of the two game appsmeasured are not unique and other appsare likely to create a similar impact. NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  19
  20. 20. Traffic mix forapplications online video is the biggestand devices contributor to traffic volumesFigure 25 shows how the most widely- Figure 25: pplication mobile data traffic volumes by device type Aused online applications contribute to 100% Otheroverall mobile data traffic volumes, and Softwarehow these contributions vary by the download/update Emailtype of connected device. This is based Encryptedon average values from the measured 80% Social networkingnetworks. Actual values in individual Web browsingnetworks can differ a lot. Regardless of Online videodevice type, online video is the biggest Online audiocontributor to traffic volumes (25-40 60% File sharingpercent), followed by web browsing Source: Ericsson (2012)(15-20 percent). Traffic drawn from mobilePCs is notable for having significantlyhigher file sharing activity than other 40%devices. Online audio, email, softwaredownloads and social networking are alsoimportant contributors to data traffic ontablets and smartphone devices. The file 20%sharing part under smartphones comesfrom tethering traffic. 0%The measurements in this section Mobile PC Tablet Smartphonewere made in a selected number ofcommercial HSPA and LTE networks The data used for this graph does not take into accountin Asia, Europe and the Americas. Wi-Fi traffic. Smartphones include Android and iPhone only. “Other” includes applications that were not possible to identify or that don’t qualify as one of the listed applications. 100 80 60 40 20 0 Mobile PC Tablet Smartphone20  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012
  21. 21. tethering Tethered deviceTethering enables users to share theirmobile internet connection with other devices, Tethering usersuch as mobile PCs, tablets or smartphones.Devices can be tethered over Wi-Fi, Bluetoothor by physical connection such as a USBcable. This is illustrated in the diagram to Tetheredthe right. device Internet Mobile networkThis section investigates the utilization oftethering on mobile phones and its impacton mobile data traffic. 10% TetheredAndroid and iPhone tether the most deviceFigure 26 shows the penetration of tetheringfrom mobile phones with different operating 8%systems. Tethering can easily be set up onthe majority of Android and iPhone devices Figure 26: Tethering penetration per phone Operating Systemcurrently available on the market. This is 6%one reason why these devices are the ones Source: Ericsson (2012)most commonly used for tethering. There is alarge variation between networks created by 4%different operator policies towards tethering.On the average network, around 3.5 percentof Android smartphones are used to tether 2%other devices and enable internet access.The tethering penetration is around sixpercent in the network with the highest 0%amount of Android tethering users. Android iPhone BlackBerry Symbian Feature phone phone phone phoneOne trend is that operators increasinglycharge consumers for tethering devices. Mobile data tethering traffic was identified correlating the IMEI TACHowever, some regulator and consumer (terminal identifier) of the terminal accessing the HSPA networkinterest groups have opposed introducing and the user agent HTTP header field containing information about 10% the end user terminal and application. Identifying tethering withtethering fees to data plans. the same terminal model is thus not possible. Measurements were performed during one week. The percentage of tethering 8% users would be higher if measured over a month. Only subscriptions with data traffic are considered, voice-only subscriptions are excluded. 6% 4% Traffic variation figures 2% Largest value measured in one of the networksThe results show that there is a big difference between the individual Average value of the measured networks’ values 0networks measured in this chapter. The graphs therefore reflect this Android iPhone BlackBerry Symbian Featurebroad spread of data in different measured networks. phone phone phone phone Smallest value measured in one of the networks NOVEMBER 2012  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  21
  22. 22. Figure 27 shows the tethering penetration of Figure 27: enetration of tethering for different smartphone P models from the same vendor and with the same OSdifferent smartphones from the same vendorwith the same OS. There can be large differences 10% Source: Ericsson (2012)between models depending on tetheringcapabilities. Generally, tethering is more popularon models with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot feature. 8% Enable tethering via USB Enable tethering via USBTethering combinations cable, Bluetooth cable, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 6%Figure 28 compares tethering combinationson different mobile phones. The mostcommon tethering combination is to sharethe 3G connection of an iPhone or an Android 4%smartphone with a mobile PC. Typically, morethan 1.5 percent of iPhone and Androidsmartphone users in a network share their 2%3G connection with a mobile PC. 0% Model A Model B Model C Model D Largest value measured in one of the networks Average value of the measured networks’ values 10% Smallest value measured in one of the networks 8% Enable tethering via USB Enable tethering via USB cable and Bluetooth cable and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 6%Figure 28: Different tethering combinations (medians from all measured networks) 4% Source: Ericsson (2012) 2% 2.0% 0 Model A Model B Model C Model D 1.5% 1.0% 0.5% 0% Mobile PC iPhone iPad Android phone iPhone Symbian Android phone phone BlackBerry BlackBerry phone phoneTethering users Feature Feature User terminal phone phonesharing their mobile using the sharedinternet connection internet connectionTethering for Android tablets and Windows phones is excluded from the analysis. This is because the results are statistically unreliabledue to the small number of devices seen in most measurements. Mobile routers have not been included since they are meant to tether.22  ERICSSON MOBILITY REPORT  NOVEMBER 2012