45 mln 3G subscribers in 2004, 85 mln by 2005

Global 3G subscribers will grow from an estimated 45 mln at the end of 2004 to 85 mln in 2005, according to Wireless World Forum. Although 2004 has been a year of false 3G expectations outside of Japan and Korea, 2005 could potentially be a good year for 3G in the rest of the world. This, however, will not be the case if operators in Europe and America fail to adopt the 3G policies of seamless migration successfully implemented in both Korea and Japan. Using seamless migration, Japanese operators have managed to subscribe 1 in every 6 of the population, compared to 1.3% in Europe. European uptake has been led by Hutchison 3G whose strategies have failed to vindicate the business model associated with 3G.