Global Broadband Industry
The global broadband industry continues to go from strength to strength, with the number of households with internet access approaching close to 2.5 billion in 2015. About 35% of households with access to the internet have fixed broadband access, according to research from Paul Budde Communication.
Industry performance is fuelled by the availability and speed of broadband, making this one of the fastest-growing segments in the telecoms sector in the US and Canada. Within the EU, many governments have invested public funds in upgrading their broadband infrastructure. Fiber rollouts in various regions, especially the Gulf, are rising to match growing international bandwidth.
In Latin America, a growing number of countries continue to adopt national broadband plans, further driving growth in the sector. In Africa, fiber bandwidth has grown a hundred times in a three-year period, though $20 billion needs still to be invested. The Australian government has invested heavily in supporting the National Broadband Network (NBN).
- The global mobile broadband industry generated revenue of close to $239 billion in 2011, according to research from MarketLine. Industry performance reached close to 38% yearly growth for the four-year period ending 2011. In terms of industry consumption volumes, yearly growth exceeded 39% over the same period, surpassing the 1 billion subscriber mark in 2011. Market growth is expected to slow to just over 25% between 2011 and 2016 to bring the industry to $726 billion in 2016.
Regional Market Share
- The US mobile broadband industry generated revenue of $50 billion in 2011, reports MarketLine. Industry performance reached a yearly growth rate of almost 34% for the four-year period ending 2011. Industry consumption volume witnessed 47% yearly growth over the same period, exceeding 236 million subscribers in 2011. Market growth is forecast to slow to a yearly rate of just more than 27% for the five-year period ending 2016, bringing the industry to almost $168 billion.
- The Asia-Pacific region’s mobile broadband sector was worth almost $120 billion in 2011. MarketLine estimates the region grew at more than 35% each year between 2007 and 2011. The growth rate of industry consumption volumes was similarly around 35% yearly over the same four-year period. In 2011, the Asia-Pacific mobile broadband industry had more than 430 million subscribers. Industry performance is expected to slow to a yearly rate of less than 29% between 2011 and 2016. The Asia-Pacific mobile broadband sector is forecast to generate revenue in excess of $422 billion before the close of 2016.
- MarketLine estimates the European mobile broadband industry generated revenue of almost $35 billion in 2011. Between 2007 and 2011, the EU mobile broadband industry witnessed annual growth in excess of 35%. In terms of industry consumption volumes, the EU sector maintained yearly growth of more than 30%. Moving forward, growth in the European mobile broadband industry is predicted to slow, with yearly expansion of less than 16% forecast between 2011 and 2016. This regional market is expected to generate revenue of over $72 billion in 2016.
The global broadband industry is expected to continue recording strong growth over coming years. One major factor contributing to industry expansion involves strong government broadband initiatives, with state funding being invested in improving broadband infrastructure. A number of innovative commercial projects planned or already underway will also fuel growth in the global broadband sector.
Research from Paul Budde Communication underlines the importance of policies in more than 40 nations catering for broadband within their national social and economic development plans. As the importance of broadband infrastructure has been prioritized in many social and economic government policies, the industry is set to benefit from a greater focus on coordination between sector-based policies and regulation.
Technological advances also continue to contribute to broadband industry growth. Widespread recognition of the social benefits afforded by broadband will also help fuel industry performance. Broadband is increasingly perceived as a tool for social improvement, with access enabling people to look for employment, carry out research related to business growth, and for other informational purposes linked to education and healthcare.
Leading Industry Associations
- Telecommunications Industry Association www.tiaonline.org
- Personal Broadband Industry Association http://personalbroadband.org
- Internet Industry Association http://iia.net.au/
- Broadband Wireless Association www.broadband-wireless.org
- Wireless Communications Association www.wcai.com