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Global mobile roaming data traffic to recover to pre-COVID levels in 2022 as traffic predicted to fall by 53% in 2020…

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Kaleido Intelligence’s  Roaming Data Hub – Q2 2020  predicts a substantial decline in annual inbound and outbound travel numbers this year, representing around 64% fall in global travel volume.

Following the spread of the Coronavirus worldwide, 100% of global destinations have imposed travel restrictions impacting travel volume and roaming traffic in 2020.

Kaleido predicts that the Coronavirus impact will translate into a decline of 58% for global active outbound roaming trips in 2020, representing 586 million trips in total. Consequently, data roaming traffic will reach just 310 Petabytes globally, matching 2017 level of roaming data usage.

However, as travel recovery begins, Kaleido predicts that data roaming traffic will grow by 93% in 2021 to reach nearly 600 Petabytes. Kaleido’s research noted that operators will innovate to launch new cheaper roaming plans, day passes and extend RLAH to newer markets and travel corridors to drive usage as travel recovers.

Kaleido forecasts that data traffic will match pre-COVID-19 levels in 2022 and will see an average annual growth of 40% over the next five years to exceed 1,600 Petabytes in 2025.

Nitin Bhas, Chief of Strategy & Insights at Kaleido Intelligence says: “In May 2020, Kaleido predicted 3 travel recovery scenarios. For this update, we have finalised a growth trajectory based on current regional and country-level trends and it is our assumption that travel will begin to recover from 2021 onwards. However, travel trips will only match pre-COVID-19 levels in 2023 in the majority of the markets.”

IoT roaming traffic and revenues  flat in 2020

Kaleido’s  Roaming Data Hub, Q2 2020  includes roaming metrics covering both IoT and 5G Roaming, which are already impacting the roaming ecosystem and creating new revenue opportunities.

Kaleido believes that the impact of COVID-19 on the cellular M2M market is set to be significant, owing to an acceleration in digitisation strategies to reduce future risk across several verticals. However, growth between 2019 and 2020 is predicted to be virtually flat, with only 19 million additional roaming connections added in 2020.

Steffen Sorrell, Research Lead says: “This is largely due to the pandemic’s heavy impact on hardware supply chain players, a short-term decline in business investment appetite in the immediate aftermath of the pandemic as well as a considerable loss in the growth of new vehicle sales.”

IoT roaming growth is expected to jump-start in 2021, with North America and Europe and Central Asia showing considerable growth potential.

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