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Roaming traffic doubles in 2017

January 29th, 2018

Latest News from O2 reports that Global LTE roaming traffic more than doubled in 2017 seeing a 800% growth in EU data roaming

Democratization of roaming, consumer demand for high quality services, and EU’s ‘Roam Like at Home’ ruling prompts surge in LTE roaming traffic

Brussels – Belgium, January 18, 2018 – Global LTE traffic more than doubled in 2017 and will increase by the same volume in 2018, according to annual research by BICS, a global wholesale carrier for voice, mobile data and capacity services. This marks a continuation of the trend for year-on-year LTE traffic growth, with BICS identifying a number of ‘drivers’ for this rapid surge.

BICS’ most recent data, gathered at the close of 2017, shows that a total of 562 operators now offer LTE services; an increase of 25% on the previous year. The same period saw BICS dramatically increase its market share, with a third of these operators connected to BICS’ IPX (IP exchange) platform. The platform allows customers to offer their subscribers high quality data roaming with other MNOs, MVNOs, MVNEs, fixed network operators, ISPs and ASPs globally.

The summer months saw a 600-800% increase in LTE data roaming traffic

in the EU compared with 2016, driven by the EU’s regulation on wholesale roaming charges which came into effect in June. However, BICS estimates that around 20% of subscribers in the EU have not yet taken advantage of this new roaming setting, having either been unaware of the ruling, or been hesitant to utilize. As such, BICS expects an even greater increase in LTE roaming traffic in the region this year, as knowledge of ‘Roam Like at Home’ amongst subscribers increases and operators offer more competitive packages.

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