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Numbers, Part Eleven: Mobile and Cellphones

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More numbers,
and I was fascinated to see a presentation from O2, the UK mobile
service, the other day where they held up a few numbers that are fairly
staggering.  In the UK:

  • 15% of people are dumped by a girl or boyfriend via an SMS text message;
  • O2 sold their first iPhone at 6:02 on 6th November 2007 and the first iPhone call was made at ... 6:06!
  • O2
    sold 200,000 iPhones in the first two months of retailing in the UK
    compared to four million iPhones sold worldwide in the six months from
    launch on 29 June 2007;
  • 65 million SMS text messages were sent on New Years Eve 2007 by the O2 network alone; and
  • the average person's mobile telephone has 30 unique numbers stored on it (of which one is probably the bank!).

This was followed by a few other amazing stats, courtesy of my friend Roy Vella: 

  • there are three billion mobile telephone subscribers worldwide, 1.1 billion PC users and 1.8 billion credit card holders;
  • 1,000 new mobile telephone connections are added every minute;
  • 60% of subscribers are in developing countries, and 80% of new mobile  telephone subscribers are from developing countries; 
  • there has been a 10% increase in mobile usage in the last year, resulting in a 1.2% rise in GDP;
  • a 2.5% reduction in the cost of remittances results in a 60% rise in volume; and
  • mobile payments users average 26% more transactions than card users (according to NTT DoCoMo's Edy studies in Japan).

There's loads more numbers in this area, with many banking estimates and discussions on Finextra.  For example:

  • Celent estimates that 35% of Americans will use mobile banking by 2010;
  • US mobile banking users will rise from 1.1 million in 2007 to more than 40 million by 2012, according to  TowerGroup;
  • mobile
    banking users will rise from 7% of users in 2007 to 25% by the end of
    2009, with US users rising from 1.6 million in 2007 to 35 million by
    end of 2010, according to Aite Group;
  • the number of users of mobile banking users in the US will reach 21.27  million by 2010, according to Frost &  Sullivan;
  • the mobile payments market will rise from $77.6 million in 2007 to $11.5 billion in 2011, according  to a report from Juniper Research; whilst
  • 53% of Americans have no interest in using mobile banking or commerce,  according to Harris Interactive.


I guess this quote demonstrates why the mobile is important to all of us financial services: "In
2007, there are 2 billion mobile phone users who do not have a bank
account, or regular internet access, or both. Their primary banking
service will be their mobile phone.”  The GSM Association

Chris Skinner Author Avatar

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog,, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...

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