Data services are predicted to drive growth in the Asia Pacific mobile services market through to 2025, increasing at a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.1 per cent.
This is according to research firm GlobalData, which forecast mobile services across the APAC region market will grow at a CAGR of 6.1 per cent from 2020 to 2025, going from a decline in 2020 due to COVID-19, followed by a recovery from 2021 onward.
While mobile data services revenue is anticipated to jump up, mobile voice services revenue won't be anywhere near as lucky with a predicted decline of 0.3 per cent CAGR over the period. Out of all the countries within the region, Australia is predicted to lead the pack in terms of mobile service revenue for the period with a CAGR of 15.4 per cent.
In second place is expected to be India with 10.1 per cent, followed by China with 7.6 per cent, Singapore with 7 per cent and then the Philippines with 5.8 per cent.
Aasif Iqbal, telecom analyst at GlobalData, said the APAC region’s overall growth in mobile data services will be backed up by an increase in the adoption of higher average revenue per user (ARPU) 4G and 5G subscriptions.
Indeed, monthly mobile data usage by APAC users is expected to nearly double, rising from 7.7GB in 2020 to roughly 14.4GB by 2025, due to online video and social media application habits and data-centric plans to be promoted by operators.
Iqbal added that initial 5G deployments were hindered by the coronavirus pandemic across the region, but he had a positive outlook about future rollouts.
“Similar to all other regions, 5G service deployments by operators and its adoption by users in Asia-Pacific were affected to an extent by the COVID-19 crisis," he said. “However, the governments and regulators across many countries in the region are working together to create a favourable business environment to encourage investment and allow operators to rollout and expand 4G/5G services further.”
Despite the significance of 5G, 4G is set to hold the largest share of mobile subscriptions in APAC during the period due to operators expanding their LTE coverage.
GlobalData research highlighted the providers Telenor and Ooredoo as an example as one such operator, as it has been “aggressively investing in LTE network expansion” in Myanmar, the firm claimed.