The mobile broadband device market will claim a global installed base of more than 525 million units by 2016, according to a Strategy Analytics report.
In its Mobile Broadband Devices: 5-Year Market Forecast for Embedded and External Modems report, the analysts predict steady growth for external modems over the forecast period.
It believes there will be a steady uptake of mobile broadband models over the next five years as people continue to demand more from their smartphones. Expansion will be driven by device costs, more flexible tariffs, a shift to LTE and growth in mobile hotspots for multiple devices, such as tablets and other consumer electronics.
However, embedded modems will experience slower growth due to the higher cost of embedding cellular capabilities and the need for additional data services.
Andrew Brown, director of Wireless enterprise strategies at the Strategy Analytics, said: ‘Mobile hotspots have been a highlight in this sector, typically enabling up to five devices at a time to connect anywhere on one data plan. The growth in the number and variety of Wi-Fi-enabled devices has considerably increased the value proposition of these mobile hotspot devices.’