Ofcom has announced the publication of its annual Communications Market Report (CMR), the inclusive study of the UK’s telecoms, broadcasting and postal industries. This year’s report highlights the continuing changes in the communications sector and how consumers behaviour has transformed using technology services. The report reveals how we use the internet and digital devices such as smartphones at home, at work and on the move.
Points included in the report include:
- Telecoms, TV, radio and post services revenue totalled £54.7bn in 2017, 2% lower than 2016.
- 5.2% of households’ spend was on communications services (£124.62 per month); 70% of this was on telecoms services.
- Mobile phones and TVs are the only communications devices with near universal reach in the UK (96% and 95% of households).
- Smartphones have become the most popular internet-connected device (78% of UK adults use one)
Ofcom also emphasises the move towards a 5G future: ‘The UK’s first 5G trials are already under way, and with the commercial deployment of 5G services expected in 2019 or 2020, mobile data network connection speeds are expected to increase significantly, making a new generation of mobile services a reality and generating further demand for on-the-go data connectivity.’
The report discloses that once 5G is deployed, together with more reliable fixed-line data connectivity, it is most likely to increase the capacity of mobile networks and the availability of converged fixed-mobile communications services, whereby users’ devices switch seamlessly between fixed and mobile networks according to network availability/performance.
techUK’s Programme Manager for Communications Infrastructure Sophie Weston, commented: “It’s amazing to see how much communication services has transformed over the last decade. The use of digital technology now has such a positive impact on everyday life such as getting in touch with distant relatives, spreading awareness and saving lives. Digital connectivity is crucial to the UK – a world-leading communications infrastructure is central to ensuring every British business can become a digital business and create an open digital economy that works for everyone. techUK’s Communication Infrastructure Programme is working alongside Ofcom and DCMS to achieve the UK Digital Strategy’s ambition of ensuring a world-class digital infrastructure for the UK.”