It appears that postpaid subscriptions are going strong over the last twelve months, while prepaid connections are on the decline. New research data collected by market researcher ShareTracker does indeed point out that prepaid -- the segment with the biggest growth in the United States not so long ago -- has been decreasing lately.
As reported by ShareTracker, postpaid net additions among the wireless carriers in the US has ballooned by a whopping 156 percent between the period 2013 to 2014.
For several years, when people speak of postpaid, they normally think of plans that come with contracts. But in the last few years, postpaid's meaning has somewhat evolved into any plan wherein the subscriber pays based on a set billing cycle.
Prepaid, meanwhile, is considered as any service or plan wherein the customer purchases calls, text messaging, and data services ahead of intended use. For the last twelve months, the prepaid sector has averaged a decline of 35 percent.
Not many people may notice, but the growth of the postpaid and prepaid sectors are usually associated with the state of the American economy. During the recession a few years ago, prepaid displayed remarkable growth, propelled perhaps by the immediate increase of the number of people that switched to prepaid in order to pay only for the services they can actually afford. But in the later years when the economy has begun to recover, postpaid is growing back again as consumers feel more confident in signing up for postpaid plans. (Whether the release of the best-selling iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices may have something to do with the rise in postpaid subscriptions is not supported by ShareTracker's data.)
According to ShareTracker, its data covers all subscribers that use voice and data mobile devices. This means that apart from smartphones, tablets and mobile hotspots are also included in its research. In addition, ShareTracker revealed that its wireless panel encompasses 10 percent of all wireless subscribers in the United States every quarter.
As stated by Eric Fogle, the President of ShareTracker, the results of the last twelve months paint a very contrasting picture compared to that of the previous year's. Fogle is quick to note that the rapid growth of the postpaid sector is definitely a strong indication of the increased utilization of voice and data mobile devices on various wireless networks in the US. Fogle further added that new wireless subscribers who signed up for voice and data mobile devices more than doubled from 2013 to 2014 with a 169 percent increase and a 145 percent increase, respectively.
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