On March 7, the GSA put out a press release confirming that 2015 ended with over 1 billion LTE subscriptions. This is a hockey stick unlike other mobile hockey sticks. And if you want to see the GSA LTE subscription hockey stick, you can get it if you register at the site. Basically, 1 in 7 mobile connections worldwide are now LTE, and the rate of LTE subscriptions is accelerating. It’s expected that by the end of 2020, half of all mobile connections will be LTE.
So what does this mean? It means people love LTE because of various factors, such as data speed. And it means even if you don’t believe in VoLTE, it is coming because the service providers will make sure their investment in LTE pays off. So down the line, you will be talking over a VoLTE network. Additionally, it means there will be voice-enabled applications such as Rich Communication Service apps on VoLTE.
But it’s important to note that with all of this unprecedented growth, by the end of 2020, half of all mobile connections will NOT be LTE. In fact, in 2015, 3G still grew. LTE interoperability with 3G will remain important for many years. This means voice/video media codec and signaling transcoders and gateways will remain important infrastructure elements during these years. And with 3G still around, SS7/Sigtran will still be around. I’ll write a future blog about that soon.