Welcome!

Wireless Authors: Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Avi Rosenthal, Nikita Ivanov, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski

News Feed Item

GSMA Report Reveals Mobile Drives Unprecedented Growth In Arab World

New Mobile Observatory Calls for Additional Spectrum and Transparent Regulation to Further Boost Investment and Job Creation

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, Feb. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Today the GSMA published its first in-depth assessment of the impact of the mobile industry on the Arab States1, highlighting the explosive growth of mobile services in the region. Based on research from Deloitte, the GSMA Arab States Mobile Observatory2 details strong regional market competition and falling handset prices, fuelling a 32 per cent average annual growth in mobile connections over the past 10 years, soaring from 19 million connections in 2002 to 391 million in 2012.

While highlighting the extraordinary development of the region over the past decade, the report identifies fundamental challenges that put the continued growth of the sector at risk, including limited spectrum availability, high taxation and stifling regulation.

"Mobile communications in the Arab States have transformed society and fostered substantial growth in investment, innovation and productivity," commented Tom Phillips, Chief Government and Regulatory Affairs Officer, GSMA. "However, there are far greater opportunities that the mobile industry can deliver for the region. Governments need to take action now to increase spectrum availability and stabilise the regulatory environment if they want to continue the momentum and realise mobile's full potential."

Economic Impact of Mobile
The rapid pace of mobile adoption has delivered substantial economic benefits for the region, directly contributing US$ 132 billion to the economies of the Arab States, or approximately 5.5 per cent of total GDP, in 20113.

In addition to the economic value, the mobile industry has contributed to employment in the region. The full-time employment created across the Arab States as a result of the availability of mobile technologies is estimated to have been more than 1.2 million jobs in 2011.  This figure represents a combination of direct employment by mobile operators, jobs across the mobile ecosystem and the multiplier effect caused by the positive business impact of the mobile ecosystem on wider industries, further boosting job creation. If additional harmonised spectrum were allocated to mobile broadband, 5.9 million additional jobs could be created by 2025, according to the study.

Additional Spectrum Urgently Required
Mobile broadband connections across the Arab States are expected to increase by a staggering 255 per cent by 2017, rising from 40 million in 2011 to 142 million, reflecting the enormous appetite for mobile broadband services. Mobile broadband connections have already outstripped fixed-line connections by over 350 per cent.

However, to extend mobile penetration and capacity, as well as reap the associated economic benefits, governments in the region urgently need to deliver adequate spectrum in line with internationally and regionally harmonised spectrum bands, including the Digital Dividend, 2.6GHz and 1.8GHz bands.

The release of additional spectrum could raise the region's combined GDP by US$ 108 billion4 between 2015 and 2025. Harmonisation of spectrum bands would further lead to economies of scale for device manufacturers, which in turn would give more consumers access to affordable mobile technology.

Santino Saguto, Partner Consulting, TMT Leader for Deloitte Middle East, commented: "Mobile penetration has increased greatly over the past few years and now reaches well above 100 per cent in many countries of the Arab States. However, in order to meet the expected demand for new generation services, governments need to continue to support the development of mobile broadband, notably through the provision of appropriate spectrum. The current spectrum allocations are not able to sustain the potential growth in data traffic and, unless increased, seem likely to raise costs of provision, challenge investment decisions and increase network congestion."

Need for Greater Regulatory Certainty
The study also points out the urgent need for governments to revise mobile taxation and regulatory regimes across the region. Information and communication technology (ICT) policies that support light-touch regulatory frameworks will increase investment from mobile operators in next-generation data services across the region.

High consumer taxes on mobile products and services are holding back the growth of the sector, decreasing affordability and, in turn, usage levels, denying the poorest members of the population access to mobile services. A number of countries in the region, including Egypt, Jordan and Morocco, have extremely high taxes on mobile services as a result of mobile-specific or 'luxury' tax rates.

If spectrum needs are met and regulatory certainty delivered, there is a major opportunity for governments to generate significant additional revenue from the mobile ecosystem, with the potential to raise US$ 528.7 million in the Arab Middle East and US$ 383.7 million in North Africa by 2025.

Phillips continued: "The Arab States' mobile industry is clearly making a major contribution to their societies and economies. However, the potential for it to make an even greater contribution to the region's success and growth is clear with the provision of mobile data and mobile broadband services. By tackling the core issues of spectrum availability, taxation and network investment and creating a more transparent and business-friendly regulatory environment, this opportunity can be realised."

To access the report please visit: www.gsma.com/MO

Notes to Editors
1The 'Arab States' are defined in this report as the following countries: Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, United Arab Emirates, Yemen (Arab Middle East); and Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia, Sudan and South Sudan (North Africa).

2This report, prepared by Deloitte for the GSMA, is the first GSMA Mobile Observatory to focus on the Arab States. It provides a thorough analysis of the mobile communications industry across the Arab Middle East and North Africa. The report provides the latest statistics and mobile market developments, and is an important reference point for mobile industry members, policy makers and other interested stakeholders. It covers the state of the industry, including the evolution of competition, innovation in new products, services and technologies and the industry's contribution to social and economic development across the region.

3The total economic impact of the mobile communication industry in 2011 was US$ 98.1 billion for the Arab Middle East and US$ 34.1 billion for North Africa, amounting to GDP of 6.2 per cent and 4.9 per cent respectively. 

4US$ 57.5 billion in the Arab Middle East and US$ 50.5 in North Africa.

About the GSMA
The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. Spanning more than 220 countries, the GSMA unites nearly 800 of the world's mobile operators with more than 230 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organisations in industry sectors such as financial services, healthcare, media, transport and utilities. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Expo. 

For more information, please visit the GSMA corporate website at www.gsma.com or Mobile World Live, the online portal for the mobile communications industry, at www.mobileworldlive.com

SOURCE GSMA

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The 3rd International @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo – to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY – is now accepting Hackathon proposals. Hackathon sponsorship benefits include general brand exposure and increasing engagement with the developer ecosystem. At Cloud Expo 2014 Silicon Valley, IBM held the Bluemix Developer Playground on November 5 and ElasticBox held the DevOps Hackathon on November 6. Both events took place on the expo floor. The Bluemix Developer Playground, for developers of all levels, highlighted the ease of use of...
The 3rd International @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.
"There is a natural synchronization between the business models, the IoT is there to support ,” explained Brendan O'Brien, Co-founder and Chief Architect of Aria Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at the 15th International Cloud Expo®, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The Internet of Things promises to transform businesses (and lives), but navigating the business and technical path to success can be difficult to understand. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, demonstrated how to approach creating broadly successful connected customer solutions using real world business transformation studies including New England BioLabs and more.
The security devil is always in the details of the attack: the ones you've endured, the ones you prepare yourself to fend off, and the ones that, you fear, will catch you completely unaware and defenseless. The Internet of Things (IoT) is nothing if not an endless proliferation of details. It's the vision of a world in which continuous Internet connectivity and addressability is embedded into a growing range of human artifacts, into the natural world, and even into our smartphones, appliances, and physical persons. In the IoT vision, every new "thing" - sensor, actuator, data source, data con...
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) i...
There's Big Data, then there's really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, discussed how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other machines...
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example t...
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Kaplan, Managing Director of THINKstrategies, will examine why IT must finally fulfill its role in support of its SBUs or face a new round of...
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
The definition of IoT is not new, in fact it’s been around for over a decade. What has changed is the public's awareness that the technology we use on a daily basis has caught up on the vision of an always on, always connected world. If you look into the details of what comprises the IoT, you’ll see that it includes everything from cloud computing, Big Data analytics, “Things,” Web communication, applications, network, storage, etc. It is essentially including everything connected online from hardware to software, or as we like to say, it’s an Internet of many different things. The difference ...
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using the URL as a basic building block, we open this up and get the same resilience that the web enjoys.
Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, examined three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective storage designed to handle the massive surge in back-end data in a world where timely analytics is e...
How do APIs and IoT relate? The answer is not as simple as merely adding an API on top of a dumb device, but rather about understanding the architectural patterns for implementing an IoT fabric. There are typically two or three trends: Exposing the device to a management framework Exposing that management framework to a business centric logic Exposing that business layer and data to end users. This last trend is the IoT stack, which involves a new shift in the separation of what stuff happens, where data lives and where the interface lies. For instance, it's a mix of architectural styles ...
An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the industry’s first all flash version of HyperConverged Appliances that include both compute and storag...
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.