The number of active mobile subscriptions in the UK (usually defined as those which have been used in the previous 90 days) is now in excess of 80 million. Source: Ofcom Communications Market Report 2012
Value to economy
The mobile industry in the UK has been an enormous success story. Operators in the UK directly employ over 37,000 staff . Turnover for mobile communications services is £15.1 billion per annum (Ofcom, 2012). Investment in fixed capital equipment is in the order of £2.1 billion per annum (roughly £30 per subscriber).
conducted by Analysys Mason on behalf of the Government revealed that the annual value to the economy derived from the mobile industry is £30.2 billion.
The UK operations of the five network operators remit approximately £800 million to the Treasury, in terms of corporation tax, employers national insurance and VAT each year. £55 million is paid to the Treasury in annual spectrum fees. This is in addition to the £22bn paid for 3G spectrum in 2000 and a further 2.3bn in 2013 for 4G spectrum.
As well as the direct contribution, mobility and other mobile services have contributed considerably to productivity improvements in other sectors of the economy: more efficient use of mobile work forces and vehicle fleets, faster and more immediate communication for managers and executives working on time critical projects, construction, journalism, sales and many many others.
The contribution is not just economic. Mobile operators handle over 15 million 999 calls per annum (40,000 per day), many of which involve life threatening situations. Location services are used extensively in the utilities, NHS and social services to keep an eye on carers working alone in high-risk environments.