August 28 2009|09.54 AM UTC

Erik Chang

Mobile Service (and Costs) Around the World

Category: UncategorizedTags: , ,

Trends in use of mobile phones around the world vary as much as the people carrying them. Looking at some of the key factors, including pricing, usage and prevalence within a country, highlights these differences. Interestingly, as of 2006, many countries passed 100% penetration of their population, reporting more mobile phone subscriptions than people.

(click to enlarge)


Embed the above graphics on your blog:

Share this article:
  • Digg
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Tipd

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Shawn August 28, 2009 at 11:48 pm

Why no love for Canada?


c d August 29, 2009 at 12:29 am

Vodafone and Telefonica are the correct spellings….


I.K August 29, 2009 at 1:02 am

This makes me proud to be a Norwegian ;)


BillShrink Guy August 29, 2009 at 1:05 am

cd: Thanks, will fix asap. (Will also fix the Germany/France background country image snafu. Woopsie!)

Shaw: Canada is at about $41 per month for the medium usage numbers reported above.


Andrew August 29, 2009 at 1:12 am

Australia’s not worthy?


BaroqueW August 29, 2009 at 1:31 am

I live in Sweden. $11 for monthly service? Where did you get that number from?

I guess if you average with people who buy prepaid cards and don’t call anyone ever, just waiting 6months to a year for their card to expire before buying a new one, yeah, the number might be correct. Otherwise subscriptions are more like $40+ a month.


perflubon August 29, 2009 at 2:10 am

In the bar graph ‘Annual Outgoing….” – the Shape of the country next to the ‘France’ bar – that’s Germany.

I wonder that Germany isn’t mentioned in the other graphs though.


jajaja August 29, 2009 at 2:43 am

40 bucks in sweden??? are you sure? because in finland i pay 15 euros / month… cant imagine you pay that much since the biggest operator, telia-sonera, is half finnish, half swedish.


Shail August 29, 2009 at 3:11 am

I am surprised that India and China are not on the list. India has more than 500 million subscribers and the is growing at 2 million subscribers per month.


Ryan August 29, 2009 at 3:15 am

Where is the Philippines? I think we’ve got the lowest rates in the world. $7.2 USD = Unlimited Call and Text for 1 month.


Beau Giles August 29, 2009 at 3:46 am

No Australia? Makes sense, since we’re probably one of the countries with the highest mobile phone usage, and apparently we have more mobile phones than people. Just sayin’


Richard August 29, 2009 at 3:56 am

Why no love for South Africa?


SAchrisINuk August 29, 2009 at 4:23 am

No love for South Africa either?

Average prepaid service per month is about US$ 5
Average contract service per month is about US$ 20

And we have the biggest carrier in Africa and the Middle East (soon to be India as well)

Viva MTN Viva!


Farhan August 29, 2009 at 4:57 am

In Pakistan we pay only USD 1.5 cent a min on on net calls , approx 2 cents for off net calls and 3 cents a min to US , Canada, China and much of Western Europe beat that


Carl August 29, 2009 at 5:24 am

Ireland sucks. :C
We almost have the worst broadband numbers in Europe, too.


ItsReallyAboutMoney August 29, 2009 at 8:47 am

Confirms for me the notion that “phone company competition benefits the subscriber” in USA is just a red herring by moonlight, meaning it stinks.

Non-government, multiple carriers, average minutes per subscriber, largest subscriber base… yet almost double the price for the subscriber. Speaks for itself, really.


lobo August 29, 2009 at 11:21 am

italy anyone ? we have 4 mobile operators and 3 virtual operators

I know it’s a small country but we export mafia, you know


Chadwick Tuteaux August 29, 2009 at 4:10 pm

This infograph doesn’t show the cost of cellphones in Southeast Asia and Middle East.

The cellphone costs over there are insanely low. A phone call using a cellphone in Pakistan is 1.5 cents a minute! and unlimited mobile internet (which can be used with iPhone or a Blackberry is US$ 18 a month!

Middle east has slightly higher costs, but still, those costs are waaay cheaper than what users pay in US and Canada.


Shane August 29, 2009 at 7:44 pm

$22/month in Japan? Why was mine never that low??


emerysteele August 29, 2009 at 7:53 pm

what aboot us Canadians eh? We don’t actually say aboot.


dollar August 30, 2009 at 2:09 pm

One thing is the huge inflation and the falling value of the dollar, no wonder the costs are so high. In reality its not that surprising that it is that expensive simply because of the dollar devaluation.


petar August 30, 2009 at 11:07 pm


World’s top 2 growing telecom countries…

INDIA is cheapest tariff in world… where avg. monthly rentals can be as low as 4$.

& You can get unlimited incoming mintues in pre-paid mobile for just 20 cents recharge every 6 months.


Dado August 31, 2009 at 2:48 am

And source of the data is?


Josh August 31, 2009 at 9:38 pm

For those people that are wondering why their favorite country wasn’t included, maybe you should take a look at the source and realize that these are only oecd countries. also, standardized data doesn’t exist for a lot of places. so it’s better to leave countries out of case studies, than it is to include them with dubious statistics.


desing September 23, 2009 at 8:54 am

I"d like to see an Apples to Apples comparison. Whats the cost in Brazil, Russia, Africa? Something with similar land mass.


Craig October 26, 2009 at 11:15 am

You left out South Africa one of the most expensive countries in the world. For internet and fixed line and mobile! ;)


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: