According to a new research report from the analyst firm Berg Insight, HSPA/LTE accounted for 17.3% of the total number of broadband connections in Europe at the end of 2009.
The number of HSPA/LTE mobile broadband subscribers (connected PCs) grew by 71% year on year in 2009, to 25 million, and is forecasted to continue to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.6% to 81 million by 2015.
The North American market has so far evolved at a slower pace, with mobile broadband accounting for just 7.1% of the total number of connections. Between 2009 and 2015, the North American market is forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 34.8% to reach 42 million subscribers at the end of the period.
The levels of adoption of mobile broadband vary significantly across Europe. “Austria is the most advanced market with a penetration rate of over 15%, corresponding to 40% of all broadband connections in the country. Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Ireland and Portugal have also penetration rates above 10%. Belgium, Netherlands and Greece have on the other hand penetration rates of less than 3%”, said Marcus Persson, telecom analyst, Berg Insight.
He predicts that mobile broadband connectivity will eventually become a standard feature in portable PCs which will have integrated wireless modems, enabling them to connect to the best available network. “The attach rate of embedded mobile broadband in notebooks was less than 5% in both Europe and North America last year. This will change as prices for the embedded modules decrease and an attach rate of almost 45% is expected already in five years”, Marcus concludes.
Huawei has established itself as the world’s largest supplier of mobile broadband terminals holding a market share of 53% and has a particularly strong foothold in Europe. ZTE is the second largest vendor with clear margins capturing a market share of 30%. Berg Insight estimates the total global number of shipped external mobile broadband devices in 2009 to 66 million, with Europe and North America accounting for 24.3 million units and 5.6 million units respectively.