In a keynote speech at CES, in Las Vegas this week, Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg predicted that mobile broadband users will top 5 billion by 2015. That’s up from 1 billion today. The total number of mobile users recently topped 6 billion in 2011.
Vestberg spoke about the network society and the potential of intelligent, real-time communication when devices begin to take real advantage of faster silicon, sensors, software and low-latency connectivity.
He demonstrated a “capacitive coupling” technology that can be used to transfer bits from one device to another using the human body as a conduit and showed a “connected tree” (@connectedtree) that sends Tweets.
Ericsson’s broadband growth projections are among the most aggressive, although the company is probably counting HSPA and EVDO as wireless broadband, which sometimes struggle to deliver 1 Mbps.
According to Ericsson, just 26 percent of the time people spend using their smartphones is spent making voice-to-voice calls, while nearly three-fourths of smartphone use involves surfing the Internet, watching media, playing games, and other non-voice activities.
Cisco has predicted that by 2014, the average mobile broadband connection will generate 7 GB of traffic per month. Clearwire’s mobile WiMAX subscribers use around 7 GB of data per month now, reports Fierce Wireless.