FEATURE: Wireless penetration will reach 300 percent

Wireless penetration will reach 300 percent 

By Andrew Seybold 

Today there are about 3 billion people in the world who are wirelessly connected, most by voice and some by data services. In the United States there is a concern that the growth will slow down because we are at about 250 million wireless customers out of a total population of 303 million. That is equal to about 83 percent of the U.S. population. There is a fear that as we approach 100 percent penetration, the industry is going to experience a slow down. But I think 100 percent penetration is just the beginning.

Why do I say that? The answer is that we are entering a new era where it is not just one device per person. Already some of us have three. For example, I carry a Blackberry, a phone and my notebook computer is equipped with a high-speed wireless broadband modem. I also own a Kindle, the Amazon electronic book reader that uses the Sprint EV-DO network to download books, and I only pay for the book, not the airtime. In fact, there is no subscription to Sprint and many people think that the books are delivered over free WiFi, but the reality is that it is Sprint's EV-DO network.  

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