Goodbye to ARPU and MOU

Many of the terms that we as an industry have come to know and love will become irrelevant as many of the "next-generation" mobile broadband services move from the drawing board to the marketplace.  We will no longer talk about ARPUs and MOUs as a mobile "subscriber" could very well be a camera, utility meter or an automobile. 

These new subscribers will make current ARPU metrics irrelevant as they will likely only generate a few cents per month and subscriber usage will be expressed in data traffic per month as opposed to voice traffic as this will be a key metric in determining operator profitability as mobile VoIP becomes commonplace over LTE.

Markets like Hong Kong and Singapore currently raise eyebrows within the industry for having mobile penetration rates above the 150% mark. But the rise of embedded mobile broadband devices will make these figures appear to be nothing out of the ordinary as throwing automobiles, appliances and consumer electronics into the mobile subscriber mix could raise mobile penetration rates into the 300%-plus range.

Marc Einstein is industry manager for Asia at Frost & Sullivan

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