GSA, the Global mobile Suppliers Association, has declared on the basis of study conducted by Ovum that LTE subscriptions continue to grow faster than any other mobile communications system technology. Analysing mobile subscriptions data provided to the industry Association this week by Ovum for Q2 2015, GSA noted that LTE subscription net additions continue to outpace all other mobile communications technologies. LTE subscriptions reached 755 million worldwide on 30 June 2015.
LTE subscriptions increased by 113.5 million in Q2 2015, which is over 52% higher than for 3G/WCDMA-HSPA which gained 74.4 million. GSM subscriptions fell by over 98 million in the quarter.
APAC increased its share of global LTE subscriptions to 51.2%. North America has almost 200 million LTE subscriptions (198 million) and remains the second largest LTE market, though its share reduced to 26.2% of the global total compared with 42.4% a year earlier.
European share remained at around 16% and the total number of LTE subscriptions across Western Europe markets has just passed 100 million.
Strong growth was seen in the Latin America and Caribbean region which now has over 22.5 million 4G/LTE subscriptions and over 17.2 million higher than a year ago, equivalent to 324% annual growth. A strong performance for LTE was also achieved in the Middle East where more than 1 million LTE subscriptions were added monthly. The region has 23.7 million LTE subscriptions and an annual growth of 194%. Russia has almost 3x the number of LTE subscriptions compared to one year earlier.
By June 2015 China had passed 225 million LTE subscriptions, 63.5 million in Q2 alone.
422 operators have commercially launched LTE systems in 143 countries, according to GSA data announced in July 2015. GSA forecasts there will be 460 commercially launched LTE networks by end 2015.
LTE-Advanced deployments have taken hold in all markets around the world. Now over 30% of operators are investing in LTE-Advanced system deployments, with the commercialisation of carrier aggregation the first feature to be exploited. 88 operators, i.e. over 20% of all LTE operators, have commercially launched LTE-Advanced service in 45 countries. 15 LTE-Advanced networks support Category 4 devices (above 100 Mbps up to 150 Mbps peak downlink speed) while 73 networks support Category 6 devices (above 150 Mbps up to 300 Mbps). The number of LTE and LTE-Advanced subscriptions is expected to pass the 3G/WCDMA-HSPA global total in 2020.