Ericsson predicts 6.5bn mobiles by 2013

Some 6.5 billion mobile phones willl be in service by 2013, requiring millions of new base stations, predicts Ericsson.

Ericsson CEO Carl-Henric Svanberg said today 'basically anyone who wants a mobile phone will soon be able to have one.' The challenge would be to do for broadband 'what we have already done for telephony.'

He said that by 2013, some 6.5 billion mobile subs and more than 2.5 billon broadband subs - two-thirds of them mobile - will be in service, generating massive demand for fresh network capacity.

'Another couple of million radio base stations will be needed over the next five years just to provide the network coverage for the expected increase in mobile subscriptions,' he said.

Additionally, the capacity and functionality of existing networks would need to be upgraded to cope with the likely demand for mobile broadband.