Wireless by the Numbers


DailyWireless.org does a great job of collecting the mobile and wireless numbers on their site. It's incredible, actually, I'm incapable of absorbing the sheer amount of links and stats they post daily, mostly having to do with wireless infrastructure. Definitely check it out if you want to drink from a firehose of wireless information.

I've been meaning to point out some numbers that have flown by in the past few days. The first is the breakdown of mobile subscribers by year end 2005 by country. Those are pretty useful to have around. I didn't realize the U.S. was going to break 200 million subs by the end of the year. Pretty cool.

The thing that really blew my mind was the predicted growth of WiMax and WiBro by the end of the decade, compared with cellular growth: Where 3G cellular services is going top 750 million users by 2010, and total numbers of mobile users will be near 3 billion, WiMax will only reach just over 12 million, and WiBro just over 8 million.

Wow. There's so much hype involved with WiMax and WiBro, I just assumed - as many people do I think - that the numbers would be higher. It doesn't look like it. And though WiFi hotspots will continue to grow and play a role in consumer devices for sure, I think as anyone who's played with UMTS or EVDO can tell you, doing basic surfing, emailing or IMing over 3G is really great and takes away a lot of the impetus to mess with local WiFi connections. Dell has even announced integrated 3G in their latest Laptops. Look for this trend to continue and WiFi become less important for mobile connectivity going forward.


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