Mobile Future

Wireless subscriptions to hit 5 billion globally in 2010

In a recent CNET article, Lance Whitney explores the exponential growth of wireless on a global level. With the ITU predicting that wireless subscriptions will reach 5 billion in 2010 (or 74 percent of the world’s population), it’s pretty clear mobile devices have become ubiquitous in today’s society. And the applications offered by mobile technology are in great demand.

This week at the Mobile World Congress, held in Barcelona, International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Secretary-General Dr. Hamadoun Toure discussed the growing role that mobile plays in providing Internet access:

“Even during an economic crisis, we have seen no drop in the demand for communications services and I am confident that we will continue to see a rapid uptake in mobile cellular services in particular in 2010, with many more people using their phones to access the Internet.”

This increase in mobile connectivity can have positive implications for people around the globe.

“Even the simplest, low-end mobile phone can do so much to improve health care in the developing world,” said Toure. “Good examples include sending reminder messages to patients’ phones when they have a medical appointment, or need a prenatal check-up. Or using SMS messages to deliver instructions on when and how to take complex medication such as anti-retrovirals or vaccines. It’s such a simple thing to do, and yet it saves millions of dollars–and can help improve and even save the lives of millions of people.”