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Unlimited Mobile Data: are we ready for it?

Published on July 27, 2018

The European mobile market is starting to break the barrier since more and more countries are now offering Internet data plans at a very competitive price, and even unlimited data plans. 

It seems unbelievable, right? Not so long ago, people were usually looking for public Wi-Fi networks, and just in a few years, users can’t go without continuous access to the Internet. We have come to a point in which mobile devices are close to replace the PCs in some functions. 

Some people would say the world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data. It may be due to the current importance of this resource to drive the economy, but also because we are all the time looking for more and better-quality connections. 

However, are telecom providers prepared for unlimited mobile data? Can current network deployments deal with these limitless plans? 

European countries are among the leaders on average monthly mobile data usage per mobile broadband subscription, according to the 2017 OECD report on Digital Economy

In fact, this chart from 2017 shows the traffic a user can hire for only 30€ per month. For this amount, 6 countries offered unlimited data, and other 4 countries (Austria, UK, France and Estonia) offered at least 20 Gigabytes. 

Source: Digital Fuel Monitor

 Removing data caps from most plans could mean some users will use more data, or spend more time using it, but not all of them will do so. Also, with faster speeds (enabled by 4G, better networks and also better devices) users tend to spend more data (for example watching or sending videos with a higher quality, downloading apps or games directly from mobile networks, etc.). 

Considering higher speed and data plans, European telecom providers must therefore be ready to detect as quickly as possible any increase on the usage, congestion of networks, service interruption or lower speeds. Users crave for more data and they expect the best Quality of the Service to have the best Customer Experience.  

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