Significance Of Mobile Data Revenue Today

Mobile subscribers have reached 3.6 Billion subscriptions globally in 1st half of 2008 and are very likely to hit 4 Billion by end of 2008 with service revenues reaching USD$ 800 billion mark. Mobile data services, which SMS is one of its major elements, account for 20% of the global services revenue. In some leading operators, data services contribution can be as high as 40%*. Bearing this in mind, any revenue leakages in mobile data services will cause a significant impact to any mobile operator’s revenue. Contribution of Data services in a Mobile Operator’s Total Revenue is also showing an increase as compared to the traditional Voice services, compounding the importance of ensuring the protection of data service revenues by Mobile Operators.

(*Source: Global Wireless Data Market, 1H 2008 Update - Chetan Sharma Consulting)
Revenue Leakage

These days, SMS based fraud has become a key issue in many countries where Mobile Subscribers are deceived to call premium rate phone numbers and also participate in “get-rich-quick” scams. At the same time, there are also SMS fraud being conducted against Mobile Operators directly that are not being highlighted. This fraudulent activities includes spamming, fraud and illegal use of their SMSC resources. Such SMS fraudulent activities have resulted in:

  • Mobile Operators losing SMS based revenues
  • Higher CAPEX due to upgrades required to cater for unnecessary loading to the network resulting from fraudulent activities
  • Inter-Operator interconnecting billing discrepancies
  • Complaints from Subscribers, which may result in customer churn and lost of revenue
  • Network failure due to fraudulent traffic

This is an issue that needs to be addressed taking into consideration the importance of SMS revenue contributions.