Despite Europe's global leadership in mobile telecommunications, the market for mobile applications within the region has not matched expectations. While end users have been wary of returns on investment and operating costs, operators have been apprehensive about the levels of traffic and revenues that mobile applications can generate.
However, according to analysts at Frost & Sullivan, the enterprise segment is presenting key revenue generating opportunities for operators in the mobile applications market.
While not directly contributing to an increase in average revenue per user (ARPU), business data traffic is forecast to grow steadily. A consequence of increased mobile data is expected to be the augmented use of voice services by business users. Although limited in comparison to voice and consumer data, business data is still expected to consume network capacity. As the total European mobile applications market expands, restructured pricing tariffs are likely to be critical to leveraging growing business data traffic.
Currently, most operators have been offering flat pricing rates.
"At this developmental stage, such transparent pricing structures allow business to calculate return on investment more easily and hence encourage business to adopt mobile applications," explains Frost & Sullivan analyst Andrew Tanner-Smith. "However, as usage rises, these flat pricing schemes will need to adapt to allow operators to realize the value of increased business data traffic."