2008 Western European Mobile Communications and Mobile Data Statistics (tables only)

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Last updated: 17 Mar 2009 Update History

Report Status: Archived

Report Pages: 148

Publication Overview

This report provides 521 statistical tables for the mobile communications and mobile data activities, both on a regional and national level, for the major 18 Western European countries.


Henry Lancaster

Current publication date:- March 2009 (2nd Edition)

Next publication date:- Jan 2010

Executive Summary

Most of Europe’s mobile markets are saturated, only three countries in 2008 having less than 110% penetration. Continuing growth is largely in the 3G sector as subscribers migrate from GSM networks. Operators have encouraged this migration in a bid to exploit the potential raised by their investments in HSPA technology. Although the proportion of data to overall revenue has increased for most network operators, mobile data use remains stubbornly low as subscribers remain sceptical of the usefulness of many data applications as well as their high cost.


Average mobile penetration across Europe reached about 120% by June 2008 while sustaining subscriber growth of about 8%. The value of Europe’s mobile market has shown consistent growth for several years, growing by about 4% in 2007, reaching between €135 and €145 billion, compared with 4.6% in 2006 and 6% in 2005. This slowdown in revenue growth was largely due to intensifying competition and regulatory action which led to falling prices for voice minutes, roaming and interconnection charges.


Growth in coming years will primarily depend on subscribers using rich-media services including music downloads and mobile TV. The 3G subscriber base on which mobile data growth depends has increased by 40-70% in some markets, while the proportion of non-SMS data to overall revenue among network operators has grown consistently during the last few quarters. Nevertheless, providers have struggled to encourage subscribers to use services which are perceived as expensive and of uncertain value.


The 3G market in Europe has a far more positive outlook in 2009, given the migration of 2G users to 3G and the greater number of 3G net adds. However, the considerable growth in the number of subscribers has not yet translated into significantly higher revenue for operators. Much of this has been due to operator preference for charging for data used rather than the single payment all-inclusive model preferred by many customers, though unlimited data use for a fixed fee as well as more generous data caps has been introduced and will become common practice. Take-up of 3G has also followed the greater reliability of handsets and a better awareness of 3G capabilities among subscribers.


Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.


Notes on scenario forecasts:

The following notes provide some background to our scenario forecasting methodology:

·          This report includes what we term scenario forecasts. By describing long-range scenarios we identify a band within which we expect market growth to occur. The associated text describes what we see as the most likely growth trend within this band.

·          The projections shown in the tables in this report are based on our own historical information, as well as on telecommunication sector statistics from official and non-official, national and international sources. We assume a possible deviation of 15-20% around this data.

·          All statistics for GDP, revenue, etc are shown in US$, in order to maintain consistency within and between markets. At the same time we acknowledge that this can introduce some irregularities.

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