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Ericsson, a company providing technology to the world’s mobile operators, predicts mobile data subscriptions will hit five billion in 2016, 10 times larger than the current figure.

Ericsson says there are 900 million wireless data users today, increasing to 5 billion in only five years (pdf).

People are watching videos on their mobile devices much more often. Tablets are prime for watching video on the go, and smartphone screens have only increased in quality

By 2016 more than 30 percent of the world’s population will live in metropolitan and urban areas with a density of more than 1,000 people per square kilometer. These areas represent less than 1 percent of the Earth’s total land area, yet they are set to generate around 60 percent of total mobile traffic.

Ericsson expects traffic generated by advanced smartphones to increase 12-fold to roughly equal mobile PC-generated traffic by 2016.

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