The Mobile Economy 2015

Examining the growth of the global mobile economy
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This paper provides a landscape of the global mobile economy and discusses how the mobile ecosystem is a major driver of economic progress and welfare. It states that innovative mobile solutions are helping to provide underdeveloped, underserved, and poverty stricken regions with the opportunity to overcome socio-economic challenges particularly in the areas of financial inclusion, health, education, and disaster response. The paper suggests that for the full potential of mobile to be realized, populations across the world need access to mobile broadband networks, and affordable devices and services. The paper also recommends a number of steps that policymakers can undertake to encourage investment to build a healthy and sustainable mobile ecosystem. Key highlights include:

  • At the end of 2014, half of the world’s population had at least one mobile subscription, totaling over 3.6 billion unique mobile subscribers;
  • By 2020, around three-fifths of the global population will have a mobile subscription, with close to one billion new subscribers added over the period;
  • Global mobile subscriber base increased over 5% in 2014 and developed markets grew more slowly as penetration rates approached levels close to saturation;
  • Sub-Saharan Africa was still the world’s most under-penetrated region with subscriber growth at nearly 12%.

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