Ericsson has announced that last year, the number of mobile broadband subscriptions surpassed the 500 million mark globally. The company, which provides telecommunication and data communication systems to operators around the globe, predicts this number will double before the end of this year.

The greatest number of subscriptions, around 400 million, is expected to come from the Asia Pacific region, followed by North America and Western Europe, with more than 200 million subscriptions each. By 2015, Ericsson predicts mobile broadband subscriptions will top 3.8 billion, 95 percent of which will be driven by HSPA, CDMA, and LTE networks.

Mobile broadband adoption has accelerated thanks to growing numbers of smartphones as well as connected laptops and tablets. The introduction of high-performance networks has also helped: fast networks is changing users' consumption of online media and the Internet as a whole. Ericsson announced in August 2010 that global mobile data traffic had tripled in just one year.