Voice and messaging on data have risen in popularity in recent years with internet based applications such as Skype, WhatsApp and WeChat taking over a large chunk of the voice and messaging market. With these over-the-top(OTT) applications being available on today's mobile devices at the touch of the screen, there has been a meteoric rise in both the number of users as well as the usage of these applications - most of these applications, especially messaging applications have become the most used mobile apps for subscribers in a large number of markets. While Voice-over-IP(VoIP) is not new to the internet world, the ability of the new breed of OTT applications to provide both voice and messaging service over cellular connectivity and Wi-Fi and the features provided by these applications in terms of the ability to store contacts, keep conversation threads and being easily downloadable and used across any mobile operating system have seen these services enjoying unparralled growth in the telecoms sector especially among the younger subscriber groups.
At the same time, the market is also seeing a huge growth in data enabled native mobile calling, namely Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE). LTE, which delivers higher speeds and broader bandwidth allows high quality voice communications to be deployed over the cellular data connection using compatible handsets that support the technology. Apart from VoLTE, VoWiFI and VoHSPA are also starting to take off as mobile operators begin rolling out these services on their networks. These services, collectively known as the Voice over Mobile Broadband (VoMBB) are expected to grow at a phenomenal CAGR of 101.23% from 2013 to 2018, said TechNavio, a technology focused research firm in its report Global Voice Over Mobile Broadband (VoMBB) Market. The high growth rate expected in the VoMBB segment does not come as a surprise given the fact that VoMBB services do not require any third party application, are able to integrate with the phone's native dialling and contact lists and allow both video and voice calling and are also able to connect even across networks and users without access to the service via inter-operator arrangements. In its study, TechNavio also noted that VoHSPA is well poised to become a major segment within VoMBB, boasting capabilities that include the ability to support high-quality audio while delivering reduced costs per subscribers, improved spectral efficiency and reduced power consumption.