Expectations High for Asian Mobile Market Five-Year Growth Potential
Global analyst firms are predicting strong five-year growth in the Asian mobile voice and data markets.
Global telecoms, media and IT adviser Analysys Mason continued its enthusiastic Asian mobile market push with a report projecting that mobile broadband services in Asia-Pacific will generate three-fold revenue increases to $7.1 billion by 2015. Analyst Yanli Suo-Saunders said that the total number of mobile broadband connections in the Asia-Pacific region will increase from 6.2 million in 2009 to 27.2 million in 2015, growing at a CAGR of 28 percent, with penetration rising from 2.6 percent of the region’s population in 2009 to 11.3 percent in 2015.
“Japan will generate the most revenue out of the countries in the region throughout the forecast period, thanks to its high mobile broadband ARPU. [Japan] will account for 43 percent of the region’s mobile broadband connections,” Suo-Saunders said in the report.
Analysys Mason also showed Australia with the highest mobile broadband penetration rates in the region in 2009 at 13 percent – almost ten times the rates in Japan and South Korea. “We expect Australia to continue to lead the market in terms of penetration rate, which will increase to 28 percent by the end of 2015,” Suo-Saunders added.
This growth is being driven by Asia’s business segment, which dominated the mobile broadband user base in the region prior to 2008, and drove the initial stage of market growth. Since then, Suo-Saunders said consumers have started to become the driving force behind the growth in mobile broadband take-up in the region. “We forecast that consumers will account for 64 percent of mobile broadband connections in 2015, up from 56 percent in 2009. Mobile operators should pay equal attention to the business and consumer segments. Though the consumer segment will account for the majority of growth in subscriber numbers, business subscribers will generate higher ARPU and are likely to be more profitable.”
The report comes off the back of another regional mobile endorsement from Analysys Mason released the following day, showing that India’s rural value-added services market could generate about $835 million for regional service providers in 2014.
Analysys Mason Principal Consultant Sourabh Kaushal said that if India’s mobile subscriber base continues to build off of its contributed 42 percent net mobile subscriber growth from April 2009 to March 2010, Indian value-added services could reach as many as 70 percent of the country’s households by 2014.
“Value-added services that address the livelihood and business needs of rural subscribers, such as healthcare and agriculture, have the potential to increase revenue from these subscribers,” said Kaushal. “Agriculture, for example, is relied upon by 75 percent of the rural population in India. It is estimated that the benefits of accurate and timely information related to commodity prices, farming techniques and weather have led to farmers making additional profits ranging from $100 to $4,000 per harvest”
Analysys Mason isn’t the only firm promoting the region. A telecoms market report released by Ernst & Young in August showed Singapore’s mobile market boasting 140.7 percent broadband penetration, coming in second place to China’s 168.7 percent mobile penetration.
In the report, Ernst & Young Jonathan Dharmapalan said that regional service providers should rethink the way they do business if they want to stay competitive. “Competition in the saturated Singapore market has moved from just being between telcos, to also include technology companies and internet-based players. Local telcos are also delving into a variety of related services in an effort to differentiate themselves from one another.”