GSMA predicts 15% spike in mobile broadband investment

Wireless operators worldwide will spend up $72 billion on mobile broadband investments in 2010 to satiate users' increasing appetite for mobile data, according to the GSM Association.

Roughly half of carriers' capex spending will go toward mobile broadband, according to the group, a 15 percent jump from 2009. The number of HSPA connections worldwide is expected to increase from 200 million today to roughly 342 million by the end of 2010.

Carriers in the Asia Pacific are expected to spend the most in 2010, according to the GSMA, with around $34 billion in expenditures. North American operators will spend around $19 billion and European carriers will spend around $14 billion. The GSMA said operators in North America will spend the largest percentage of their mobile capex on mobile broadband--80 percent.

According to recently released data, operators are going to need to invest every penny they can to handle rising data traffic. Yesterday, networking vendor Cisco Systems predicted annual global mobile data traffic will grow to 3.6 exabytes per month by 2014. The firm's numbers showed a 39-fold increase in mobile data traffic from 2009 to 2014.

For more:
- see this Cisco release
- see this GSMA release
- see this Reuters article

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