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Published on Mar 22, 2011
The Wireless Association, or CTIA, released its bi-annual survey of wireless carriers and subscriber trends today at the organization's industry event in Orlando, Florida.
The study found that, from January to December 2010, wireless data traffic rose by 110%, while MMS and text messaging increased 64% and 31%, respectively. The number of smartphones active in 2010 was 78.2 million, up 57% from year ago levels, while wireless-enabled devices, such as tablets and laptops, increased 14.2% from year-end 2009 to 13.6 million from 11.9 million.
CTIA's president and CEO Steve Largent said during his keynote speech that, with rapid increases in smartphone use and growing demand, the U.S. wireless industry needs more spectrum to supply that demand.
He said, "Whether it's sending a text, making a phone call or accessing the wireless Internet, the facts prove our industry continues to offer innovative and competitive services and products that consumers love and are using more than ever. This fact-based survey proves why our industry needs more spectrum. In order to meet the demands by consumers and businesses, we need more spectrum so our wireless ecosystem can keep fueling the 'virtuous cycle' of innovation and competition"
At the event, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski echoed the belief of wireless operators that the FCC should free up more wireless spectrum, calling it a national priority and saying, "Broadband is no longer a luxury."
Genachowski warned that a failure to do so, especially if Congress does not approve $30 billion of incentive auctions to move companies off their spectrum, would result in consumers paying higher prices, dropped calls, slow and unreliable apps and well as a failure to create jobs in the industry.