GSMA Report Illustrates Asia-Led Ascent of Mobile

The GSMA has issued a new report entitled ‘Global Mobile Trends’, the first of what will be an annual publication.

GSMA Report Illustrates Asia-Led Ascent of MobileIt’s the product of the organization’s research arm, GSMA Intelligence, and arrives at an important time, as it heralds the rise of Asia as the main driver of the global mobile market. About 1.1 billion users will connect to the mobile internet by 2020, and about 60 percent of these will come from Asia. India, in particular, will provide a third of these new users, according to the report.

A report synopsis also notes that the smartphone “may now be the most commonly owned consumer electronics device.” While penetration has plateaued in a number of markets, it’s only at 25 percent in India, with considerable growth expected there and in similar low-income countries, which will ultimately see smartphone penetration rates between 60 and 70 percent by the end of the forecast period.

That trend will also see the growth of mobile services, with traditional voice and texting data expected to generate combined annual revenues of $1.5 trillion by 2020. Meanwhile, content streaming services like Netflix will rise from 3 percent of total mobile market revenues to 17 percent by the year 2025.

Finally, AI assistants are becoming an increasingly important user interface, with the GSMA report name-checking voice-based platforms like Siri and Alexa specifically. Smaller players are getting in on this market, too, with $2.3 billion in venture capital supporting it last year and more to come.

It all points to an increasingly mobile world, not just in terms of how many users are connecting, but in the kinds of activities and services that mobile platforms enable.