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    Roaming set to grow by more than 200% across next five years, driven by data use

    Across 2024, there will be more than 1.5 billion inbound roaming connections, rising to 2.4 billion by 2028, according to data from Juniper Research.

    In its latest new global report, which assesses the wholesale roaming landscape across 60 key countries, analysts are forecasting that the market will see significant growth across the coming five years – with data driving much of the growth.

    The analysis forecasts that global wholesale roaming revenue will rise from $7.1 billion in 2023 to $27.6 billion by 2028. Specifically, this growth of 286% over the next 5 years will be driven by the proliferation in the demand for data-centric use cases, including IoT over VoLTE and 5G networks.

    Therefore, the research urges operators to invest in strong network analytics and device identification tools either in-house or via third-party roaming providers to enable the detection of data-intensive roaming connections to provide accurate billing settlements; maximising wholesale roaming revenue.

    Find out more about the latest research in Juniper Research’s ‘Roaming Intelligence Centre’: Global Wholesale Roaming Market 2023-2028, or download a free sample.

    Where roaming growth will happen?

    The top five countries for inbound roaming subscribers in 2024 are identified as:

    1. US (164 million)
    2. France (147 million)
    3. China (136 million)
    4. Spain (70 million)
    5. Mexico (66 million)

    Together, these countries will account for over 583 million inbound roaming connections; representing 40% of the global market share next year.

    The research identified factors such as strong tourist markets, and established and comprehensive roaming agreements as key to the high numbers of inbound roaming connections in these 5 countries. Specifically, VoLTE roaming readiness and contingencies for 5G and IoT connections will prove critical in maximising the return on investment for wholesale roaming revenue.

    Report author Elisha Sudlow-Poole explains: “As roaming networks become increasingly complex, operators must invest in identification tools to ensure they can accommodate the predicted influx of inbound roaming connections over the next 5 years, especially as the travel industry is expected to exceed pre-pandemic levels for the first time in 2024.”

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