subscribe: Daily Newsletter
search the site
WiFi set to take over mobile traffic
New research has forecast that WiFi networks will carry almost 60% of smartphone and tablet data traffic by 2019, reaching over 115 000 Petabytes (Pb) by 2019, compared to under 30 000Pb this year – representing an almost four-fold increase.
The new research, Mobile Data Offload & Onload: WiFi, Small Cell & Networks Strategies 2015-2019, found that mobile data offload – data migration from a mobile network to a WiFi network – offers several key benefits to industry stakeholders. Offload not only addresses the issue of patchy coverage, but also has the potential for the creation of new services such as VoWiFi (WiFi Calling) and to increase the usage of existing 3G/4G services.
However, the research cautioned that WiFi offload brings challenges to Operators of effective deployment and ROI (return on investment). “Operators need to deploy own WiFi zones in problematic areas or partner with WiFi hotspot operators and aggregators such as iPass and Boingo,” says research author Nitin Bhas.
Additionally, operators are also converting residential customers to community hotspot providers, especially in the US. According to WiFi service provider iPass, there were nearly 40-million community hotspots in 2014 and this is expected to more than double this year to nearly 90-million.
Other global mobile data traffic highlights include: