Mobile traffic up 26% in 1H; Telia sees the end for trad voice

29 Nov 2006

Swedish mobile call traffic grew by 26% year-on-year in the first half of 2006 while revenue was up only marginally as prices fell sharply, according to a report by telecoms regulator the PTS published yesterday. Mobile data traffic quadrupled in the period, with average usage of 2.5MB per month, whilst mobile services revenues reached SEK8.2 billion (USD1.2 billion), up from SEK8.1 billion in 1H 2005. Traffic over 3G networks doubled and now represents 10% of total call volumes. The report arrived on the same day that Swedish incumbent telco TeliaSonera forecast that traditional fixed line telephony will disappear almost completely over the next ten years. Telia’s CEO Anders Igel told a conference in Stockholm yesterday that his company is focusing on initiatives to capture growth opportunities in other sectors such as mobile and broadband, and that he is happy to pro-actively accelerate the downward trend in the usage of fixed line phones. Despite Igel’s announcement, wireline telephony in Sweden accounted for total revenues of SEK10.2 billion (USD1.5 billion) in the first six months of 2006, according to the PTS study. The regulator also reported that total internet services turnover in the six months stood at SEK4.3 billion, and that around 1.9 million households in Sweden now have broadband internet access, representing 44% of total residences.