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HSPA and LTE now 49 Percent of all Mobile Connections in U.S. and Canada

by david.nunes

HSPA and LTE now 49 Percent

of all Mobile Connections in U.S. and


400 Percent LTE Growth Worldwide

BELLEVUE, Wash. – 4G Americas reports that the U.S. and Canada added 58 million HSPA and LTE mobile broadband connections annually at the first quarter, which translates to mobile broadband now comprising 49 percent of all mobile connections in the region, according to research by Informa Telecoms & Media. Worldwide, LTE racked up an annual growth rate higher than 400 percent at the end of March 2013, ending the quarter with more than 90 million connections, and that number grew by May to more than 100 million connections.

Today, there are 178 commercial LTE networks in 72 countries compared to about 74 commercial networks in 40 countries one year ago – more than 100 newly launched LTE networks in 12 months. LTE has been extremely successful in the U.S. and Canada where subscriptions surpassed 49 million and the North American region represents 54 percent of all global LTE connections as of March 2013.

HSPA and LTE mobile broadband had strong accelerated growth worldwide with an annual addition of 348 million subscriptions, representing 87 percent of the 400 million new global 3GPP technology connections.

Chris Pearson, President of 4G Americas commented, “Innovations in technology and service providers’ commitment to upgrading their networks to LTE has moved the U.S. and Canada to the current mobile broadband leadership position. However, the leadership of LTE in North America is fragile, as more spectrum allocations by governments are needed soon to alleviate the impending spectrum crunch.”

Dynamics of the mobile broadband market, forecasts of the future connected world and mobile disruptors are visually depicted in an infographic, which can be viewed here and on 4G Americas website at www.4gamericas.org.

“The Americas is at an exciting technology transition point right now,” stated Kristin Paulin, Senior Research Analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media.  “LTE subscriptions surpassed 49 million for the region in the first quarter of 2013, and the region has already toppled over the 50 million milestone in May. Meanwhile, GSM subscription growth peaked in the fourth quarter 2012 in Latin America, and subscription growth is now driven by HSPA and to a lesser extent by LTE.”

Following are some key statistics for the 1Q 2013:


  • 6.5 billion mobile connections; 90 percent using 3GPP technologies
  • More than 400 million annual new 3GPP connections, including 348 million annual new mobile broadband HSPA and LTE connections (in the 12 months ending March 2013)
  • 331 HSPA+ commercial networks in 130 countries today, including: 194 at 21 Mbps; 5 at 28 Mbps; 132 at 42 Mbps
  • 178 commercial LTE networks today; over 230 commercial LTE networks expected by the end of 2013
  • Over 300 total commitments to LTE deployment by network operators to date
  • Over 400 percent annual growth in LTE subscriptions
  • Global HSPA and LTE subscriptions surpassed 1.3 billion with 35 percent annual growth; 90.5 million LTE connections, more than 100 million in May 2013
  • By 2018, HSPA will consume 65 percent market share, or 4.3 billion of global mobile broadband subscriptions; LTE will hold 21 percent of the market share with 1.4 billion subscriptions

North America

  • HSPA and LTE mobile broadband achieved 181 million connections with annualized growth of 47 percent
  • HSPA and LTE added 58 million connections in the year ending March 2013 with 49 percent market share; by the end of 2018, this market share for HSPA and LTE will increase to 82 percent
  • 27 commercial LTE networks deployed
  • 49 million LTE connections, representing 54 percent of global LTE connections; forecast 61 million LTE connections at the end of 2013
  • LTE represents 24 percent market share of all 3GPP technologies in the region

Latin America

  • All mobile cellular technologies achieved 693 million connections; 96 percent market share for 3GPP technologies (668 million)
  • 51 million new 3GPP subscriptions in the year ending March 2013; 44.7 million were new HSPA connections to achieve 19 percent market share of total wireless connections; 15 million new HSPA connections were added in 1Q 2013 alone
  • HSPA mobile broadband achieved 134.5 million connections in the year ending March 2013 with annualized growth of 50 percent
  • 66 HSPA+ networks in 33 countries today
  • 20 commercial LTE networks today in Antigua & Barbuda, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Dominican Republic, México, Paraguay, Puerto Rico and Uruguay
  • 125,000 LTE connections; forecast 1.9 million LTE connections at the end of 2013

4G Americas maintains a current list of HSPA, HSPA+ and LTE Global Deployments on its website. For more information and to view a variety of statistical charts on the 3GPP family of technologies, visit www.4gamericas.org. LTE subscriber and forecast data is from Informa Telecoms & Media World Cellular Information Service (WCIS).

About 4G Americas: Unifying the Americas through Mobile Broadband Technology
4G Americas is an industry trade organization composed of leading telecommunications service providers and manufacturers. The organization’s mission is to promote, facilitate and advocate for the deployment and adoption of the 3GPP family of technologies throughout the Americas. 4G Americas contributes to the successful commercial rollout of 3GPP mobile broadband technologies across the Americas and their place as the No. 1 technology family in the region. The organization aims to develop the expansive wireless ecosystem of networks, devices, and applications enabled by GSM and its evolution to LTE. 4G Americas is headquartered in Bellevue, Wash., with an office for Latin America and the Caribbean in Dallas. More information is available at www.4gamericas.org.

4G Americas’ Board of Governors members include: Alcatel-Lucent, América Móvil, AT&T, BlackBerry, Cable & Wireless, Cisco, CommScope, Entel, Ericsson, Gemalto, HP, Mavenir, Nokia Siemens Networks, Openwave Mobility, Powerwave, Qualcomm, Rogers, T-Mobile USA and Telefónica.

About Informa Telecoms & Media
Informa Telecoms & Media (ITM; www.informatm.com) conducts primary and secondary research on the latest trends impacting the mobile communications, fixed communications and TV sectors, on a global basis. ITM’s market intelligence services – World Cellular Information Service (WCIS), World Broadband Information Service (WBIS) and the Intelligence Centre – give clients access to market forecasts and key performance indicators (KPIs), as well as detailed analysis and exploration of trends. These comprehensive and reliable data sources combined with access to a team of dedicated analysts provide clients with essential business tools to assist in their strategic and tactical decision making processes. ITM also organizes over 100 annual events bringing together the industry’s leading decision makers.


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