A Changing Telecommunications Industry
The telecommunications industry has seen major changes in recent years, many of which have had huge impacts on the economy and have caused major demographic and technological shifts at large. Of course, huge country-wide transformations will invite government study!
As such, the CRTC recently released its 2014 report on the state of the Canadian telecommunications industry that gives a national review of telecommunications and mobile device use; read on to get a high-level summary of these important findings!
Adoption rates for smartphones and tablets are on the rise with 62% of Canadians owning at least one of the two device types; 39% of Canadians also make regular use of tablets. This is a major increase over the previous year where only 51% of the population were using one of the devices and tablets only had an adoption rate of 26%. This trend is consistent with global patterns.
Figures from CTV News show that in the three months leading up to July (2014), 51.7 million tablets were shipped around the world. This is an increase of 15.6 million units from the same period last year, where only 36.1 million tablets were shipped out. Now, “units shipped” is not the same as “units sold”, but manufacturers are massively increasing shipments for a reason. There is a clear demand to which they’re responding.
The number of Canadians who are using residential/home phones is beginning to decrease. In 2013, the number of home phones decreased from 12 million to 11.2 million, a 6% decrease. Based on findings from Statistics Canada, 21% of all households now only use cell phones for their telephone services which is an 8% increase from 2010. There’s a generational aspect to this latter finding, however.
The greatest change comes from households comprised of individuals under the age of 35. 60% of the users in this age range are full cord-cutters – they only use cellphones. This is more than double the 2008 figure of 26%. Cell phone use also increased by 4% in 2013 to reach 6% for households that are made up of individuals who are 55 and older. The bottom line is that cell phone use has deeply penetrated the population – 83% of Canadian households now have cellphones.
In Canada, wireless service networks are now accessible to 99% of the population, meaning that almost everyone within the country can choose to gain access to the internet if they so choose. This particular figure is unchanged from 2012.
Data consumption, on the other hand, saw a dramatic increase, climbing from 28.4 gigabytes to 44.8 gigabytes between 2012 and 2013 per household. This 57% growth rate can mean several things:
- Individuals are consuming significantly more web-based content;
- The content being consumed is larger (file size) than previous years; or
- A combination of the above two possibilities
In addition to the amount of data consumption, the speed at which it is being consumed is also on the rise. Firstly, internet speed equal to or exceeding 5 megabits per second rose 12% between 2009 and 2013 to reach 94% of Canadians. Canadians who have taken advantage of this service has also risen in number.
How Does Canada Compare to the Rest of the World?
Xconomy found that the global average for internet speed in the 4th quarter of 2013 was 3.8 megabits per second (mbps) with South Korea having the fastest average internet speed at 21.9 mbps and Canada not making the top ten. Lower speed hasn’t stopped us from actively using the internet more often, however.
Based on the findings of Internet World Stats, the number of internet users has increased dramatically between the year 2000 and 2014. Based on a 2014 estimate of the North American Population, there are over 300,287,577 internet users amounting to 84.9% of the population. This is a 177.8% growth rate since the year 2000. This compares very differently to the global population, where only 39% of the population are internet users.
What Does This Mean for Your Business?
Internet usage and cellphone adoption are already huge, and are going to increase. This impacts buyer behaviour and also adds further avenues for contacting consumers. Both of these implications can have serious impact on the way you do business and your success. It will be necessary to have a proper understanding of such usage changes to help you stay ahead in your industry. You’re going to have greater potential access to customers; make sure you take full advantage of that with greater personalization in your interactions with them!
You’re going to have to be aware of additional security precautions as well. With a decrease in the use of landlines and an increase in mobile phone use, the threat posed by cell phones having copious amounts of hard-to-protect proprietary data is rising. Employees who bring their own devices to work may not know how to properly protect your company information or find a billing plan that is tailored to their usage.
Here at Cimpl, we have developed solutions that enable you to better manage your business’s IT and telecommunications assets. Our signature solution is Cimpl (name after the company)! Cimpl software allows you to manage more efficiently your IT and Telecom assets in your workplace. If this sounds like something that would make your life easier then you should contact us at Cimpl! As Canada’s leader in IT and telecom expense management we have been helping to give companies greater visibility over all their IT and telecom assets for more than a decade now. Hear what our customers are saying or request a demo to see how Cimpl can help streamline your business today!
Written by: Scott Oliel
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