More than 1 billion mobile users in MEA by 2022: Cisco

Mobile traffic will be on the verge of reaching an annual run rate of a zettabyte by 2022

58% of Middle East and Africa population will be on mobile by 2022
58% of Middle East and Africa population will be on mobile by 2022

There will be 1.0 billion mobile users in Middle East and Africa by 2022 (58% of MEA population), up from 798 million in 2017, Cisco’s Mobile Visual Networking Index (VNI) Forecast shows.

At the inception of Cisco’s VNI Forecast more than a decade ago, mobile traffic represented less than 5% of total IP traffic crossing global networks. Today, the role and reliance placed on mobile networking has dramatically increased.

There has been worldwide rise in mobile access for consumers and business users. The expanded reach and quality of mobile broadband has fostered a seemingly insatiable demand for mobile communications, media and a wide range of mobile IoT applications.

According to this year’s forecast update (2017 – 2022), mobile traffic will be on the verge of reaching an annual run rate of a zettabyte by the end of the forecast period. By 2022, mobile traffic will represent nearly 20 percent of global IP traffic and will reach 930 exabytes annually. This will equate to nearly 113 times more than all global mobile traffic generated just ten years prior, in 2012.

Mobile technologies continue to connect more people and things than ever before. In 2017, there were 5 billion mobile users worldwide, but over the next five years, that number will increase by half a billion to 5.5 billion users, which represents about 71% of the global population.

Key predictions for the Middle East and Africa

- Mobile traffic per user will reach 7,649 megabytes per month by 2022, up from 777 megabytes per month in 2016 – a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 57%.

- Mobile traffic per mobile connection (including M2M/LPWA) will reach 4,061 megabytes per month by 2021, up from 459 megabytes per month in 2016, a CAGR of 55%.

- MEA will have the second highest growth rate in terms of mobile M2M connections, with a CAGR of 31% between 2017 and 2022. It is predicted that M2M traffic will grow almost ten-fold between 2017 and 2022, with a CAGR of 58 percent.

- In 2017, average cellular speeds in MEA were approximately 4.4 Mbps. By 2022, Cisco predicts a 10.9 Mbps increase to 15.3 Mbps. Average Wi-Fi speeds are also expected to increase, from 6.2 Mbps in 2017 to 11.2 Mbps in 2022.

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