GSMA Calls for A Connected Europe Through Next-Generation Mobile Technology

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The GSMA today highlights the urgent need for European industry and governments to work together to harness the potential of mobile communications to drive growth increase employment stimulate innovation and improve sustainability.

Despite recent setbacks for the European mobile industry with decreasing revenues that will impact future investment, mobile communication is still a key European industry, comparable in size to aerospace and larger than pharmaceuticals, with total revenues amounting to around EUR174 billion.

Anne Bouverot, Director General, GSMA, commented: "Europe is experiencing successive waves of mobile connectivity. The first wave - Europe's GSM success - connected people on the move. The second wave brought mobile broadband at ever-increasing speeds to hundreds of millions of Europe's citizens and businesses. We are now seeing the third wave with mobile networks delivering connectivity to devices ranging from health monitors and smart meters to connected cars, transforming the face of industry and the lives of individuals."

Impact of Mobile in Europe

Europe has the highest mobile penetration rate in the world, with total connections of 135 per cent in Europe in 2012 (versus 87 per cent in Asia and 108 per cent in Northern America), and predicted to rise to 152 per cent by 2017. Meanwhile the penetration of unique mobile subscribers is currently at 76 per cent in the region and set to increase to 80 per cent by 2017(2).

Across Europe, it is forecast there will be 2.1 billion mobile connections by the end of this decade, an increase of more than 60 per cent from 1.3 billion today(3). Advanced mobile broadband networks are delivering faster data rates, low latency and expanding coverage, with currently 326 million mobile broadband connections in Europe alone(4).

Mobile connected devices in Europe are predicted to soar to almost 1 billion by 2020, with total connected devices estimated to reach almost 6 billion. Total revenues forecast for key industries in Europe through mobile connectivity by 2020 per year include almost 23 billion Euros for healthcare; 46 billion Euros for Smart Cities and utilities; and 48 billion Euros for the automotive and transport sector.

Bouverot continued: "Europe has been an innovator and leader from the inception of mobile communications, although this leadership position has weakened in recent years. The third wave of mobile and the delivery of connected services present a new and substantial opportunity for future growth. It is my wish that the mobile industry and European institutions establish a positive policy framework that will continue to position Europe at the forefront of this exciting industry."

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