Mobile operators are set to see losses of $14bn as messaging services like WhatsApp and Facebook continue to grow, according to Juniper Research.
Network operators are forecast to see a 26% increase in losses of revenues this year, compared to 2013.
OTT (Over the Top) companies like WhatsApp, Facebook and Skype are taking away both voice and messaging traffic, and market share, from network operators.
The report, entitled Mobile Operator Business Models: Challenges, Opportunities & Strategies 2014-2019, argues that a mixture of IM, VoIP and social media has caused mobile revenues to fall to less than 60% of their value compared to five years ago, in countries like Italy, Spain and the UK.
Operators also saw another threat this week, with the announcement that Apple’s new iPads will include built-in SIM cards that will allow consumers to easily switch networks.
However the author of the report, Dr Windsor Holden, said there is hope for mobile operators in the form of machine to machine, direct carrier billing and big data.
“In areas such as M2M (Machine to Machine) and mobile money, operators can achieve a substantial revenue uplift by focussing on full service provision rather than simple connectivity”.
He also suggests operators implement direct carrier billing to keep a foothold in the mobile content space, and analytics packages to monetise consumer ‘big data’.
Read the full report here.