Our nine predictions for 2016 were designed to be measurable. The outcome wasn’t bad. Consequently, inspired by Apple’s self-proclaimed ‘courage’ to remove the headphone jack on the then-new iPhone 7, we upped our game when publishing our eight (courageous) predictions for 2017.
We didn’t think it would play out as well as it did. We predicted that Verizon would dump bucket plans and go all-in on unlimited. It happened. Verizon doesn’t call its unlimited plan “Kick the bucket”, but still. We predicted that the “control & zero-rate content” bundle would fail in the light of unlimited and the clouds have never been darker for AT&T with regards to its thirteen-months-have-elapsed-but-yet-to-be-approved attempt to take control over Time Warner. We also predicted that BT and Deutsche Telekom would eat crow and admit that their copper-embracing access strategy wasn’t future-proof just to realise that they now need to speed up to meet the demand for FTTH – or be run over by competition.
We weren’t right on everything – Vodafone didn’t pause 5G plans to focus on unlicensed spectrum; the company just asked the industry to sober up – but we are nevertheless so encouraged that we for 2018 present seven undaunted predictions:
Continue reading Seven undaunted predictions for 2018
Mobile operators are abandoning the previously predominant model to subsidize handsets and to, in return, lock customers in on long contracts with elevated service fees.
The death of the model should be mourned by no one since end-users have been given choice and flexibility through a multitude of non-binding, cheaper and flexible service options with generous – or even unlimited – allowances. Operators have seen customer churn decrease as end-users hold onto their handsets longer. As a direct consequence, EBITDA margins have increased.
Investors might still complain about the revenue growth, but measured as percentage of revenue mobile carriers currently produce the best margins on record. Continue reading Carriers moved away from subsidizing handsets. Now they subsidize customers’ video consumption.
Analysis & go-to-market 2017
Preparing and presenting “How carriers are using Wi-Fi to boost their businesses” for attendees at the Wi-Fi World Congress Europe in The Hague 2 November.
The presentation covered:
- The latest stats on mobile data usage per country
- A reflection over what EU’s Roam Like at Home implementation has meant for Wi-Fi
- Stats on smartphones’ time distribution between Wi-Fi and cellular per country
- A comparison between fixed and mobile data usage
- The unlimited mobile data trend
- Three reasons why operator Wi-Fi still is relevant – video subsidisation, indoor coverage and cost
- Operator Wi-Fi deployment stats from around the world
- Wi-Fi stats from Hong Kong and Korea
- Key takeouts
The conference organisers summarised the presentation in this live post: LIVE from The Hague: The Wi-Fi vs. Mobile debate
If you’d like to see the full presentation, it has now been made available also on video: https://vimeo.com/242596226
Ookla, the company behind Speedtest, has just published its Speedtest Global Index for August 2017. As always, it’s interesting.
According to Ookla’s crowdsourced data, the fastest average mobile data experiences in the world are found in:
- Norway – 55.72 Mbit/s
- Netherlands – 48.30 Mbit/s
- Hungary – 46.72 Mbit/s
- Singapore – 46.62 Mbit/s
But since all mobile networks are based on shared capacity, we decided to cross correlate Ookla’s speed data with our own mobile data usage data. Is there – or is there not – a relationship between mobile data usage and experienced speed?
The graph below correlates the two (click to enlarge).
Continue reading Fast networks, light payload
Also the 2017 version of Nexterday North was a true ‘anti-seminar’ with futuristic and insightful speakers in a great, sometimes quirky, mix. May Comptel‘s spirit thrive also now that it is a part of Nokia.
This year, tefficient held a keynote presentation focused on bundles and the effect on churn.
Continue reading Bundles and churn: Nexterday North 2017
Look at the graph below. It should satisfy mobile end-users, operators, regulators, politicians and equipment suppliers.
It shows that all operators have improved 4G coverage to the extent that they all (well almost) reach above 90% of the population by the end of June.
Mission accomplished then? Continue reading European 4G – mission accomplished?
We have published numerous analyses on mobile data usage. The two latest are:
Our readers also know that we follow operator Wi-Fi closely, see e.g. this piece.
At tefficient, we believe that the world is (or is about to become) mobile-first. But it doesn’t mean that the mobile networks will carry most of the traffic. In contrast, as shown in this post based on OpenSignal data, the regular smartphone user is most often more on Wi-Fi than on mobile networks. And when the smartphone is on Wi-Fi, the traffic volume is often higher since fixed broadband users seldom have to worry about data caps. Mobile operating systems are also set up to prefer (or in the case of upgrades, mandate) Wi-Fi. All Wi-Fi traffic ends up on the fixed access network, not on the mobile access network.
We don’t take a side in the tiring conflict between the cellular camp and the Wi-Fi camp and will continue to argue that it’s not cellular or Wi-Fi, it’s cellular and Wi-Fi. It’s not licensed or unlicensed spectrum, it’s licensed and unlicensed.
For this post we have, for the first time, gathered reported fixed data usage stats from regulators and operators globally to try to answer two questions:
- Are countries with low mobile data usage having higher fixed broadband usage? I.e. is fixed broadband compensating?
- Are countries with high mobile data usage having lower fixed broadband usage? I.e. is mobile ‘cannibalising’ fixed?
Continue reading Is high mobile data usage cannibalising fixed?
Data usage, traffic and revenue per GB for 111 operators
This is tefficient’s 16th public analysis on the development and drivers of mobile data.
It is an add-on to our just-published analysis “More for more” isn’t happening which compares 33 countries.
In this analysis we compare operators. We have ranked 111 of them based on: Continue reading The luxury of the commodity gigabyte
Cherish “more for the same” – it’s the best you get
For the 15th time: tefficient’s data usage and revenue analysis
The usage continued to grow in 2016, but the spread in growth rates has never been greater between markets. Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong and, surprisingly, USA grew the slowest whereas Poland, Lithuania, Romania, Austria and France grew the fastest. Continue reading “More for more” isn’t happening
For the fifth consecutive year: Comprehensive business benchmark including a total of 164 revenue, OPEX, CAPEX, TCO, productivity, traffic load and network quality KPIs – with a peer group solely consisting of network sharing joint ventures. Continue reading Network sharing JV benchmark 2017