U.S. Wireless Growth

Posted by Sam Churchill on

CTIA released its bi-annual survey this week, which tracks data submitted by carriers from January-December 2010, documenting subscriber growth, usage, revenue and capital investment.

The U.S. wireless survey shows (pdf):

  • Wireless subscriber connections: 302.9 million, compared to year-end 2009: 285 million for an increase of 6 percent.
  • Wireless penetration rate: 96 percent compared to year-end 2009: 91.2 percent.
  • Minutes of Use (MOU): 2.241 trillion compared to 2009: 2.275 trillion.
  • SMS sent and received: 2.052 trillion compared to 2009: 1.563 trillion for an increase of 31 percent.
  • MMS sent and received: 56.6 billion compared to 2009: 34 billion for an increase of 64 percent.
  • Data traffic on wireless networks in the last six months of 2010: 226.5 billion megabytes compared to the last six months in 2009: 107.8 billion megabytes for an increase of 110 percent.
  • Average wireless bill (includes voice and data service): $47.21 compared to year-end 2009: $48.16.
  • Number of active smartphones: 78.2 million compared to year-end 2009: 49.8 million for an increase of 57 percent.
  • Number of active data-capable devices: 270 million compared to year-end 2009: 257 million for an increase of 5.3 percent.
  • Number of web-capable devices: 242 million compared to year-end 2009: 238.4 million.
  • Wireless-enabled tablets, laptops and modems: 13.6 million compared to year-end 2009: 11.9 million for an increase of 14.2 percent.

Total annual capital investment in 2010 rose 22 percent to $24.9 billion. Wireless annual service revenue increased 4.8 percent from a year earlier to $159.9 billion. Wireless data revenue grew to $50.1 billion, representing 31.4 percent of total service revenue, according to the wireless association report.

Seattle Times staff columnist Brier Dudley conducted his own survey on his blog:

  • Asked generally if the $39 billion deal is good for consumers, two-thirds said no, it will make things worse for them.
  • Only 14 percent said the deal will result in better service and coverage.
  • Of the nearly 1,500 participants, 53 percent believe the deal will be approved and 11 percent expect it to be blocked by regulators.
  • Asked about how the deal will affect them, the largest percentage of respondents — 37 percent — said they are T-Mobile customers and will just see what happens with the merger.
  • But 30 percent said they are T-Mobile customers now thinking about switching providers.
  • Among respondents who said they were T-Mobile customers, about 45 percent said they may switch.

It wasn’t a very scientific poll, but the results are still interesting. If 45 percent of T-Mobile’s subscribers leave, AT&T’s new market share won’t be quite so dominant, observes Dudley.

Posted by Sam Churchill on Thursday, March 24th, 2011 at 9:13 am .

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