Video Calls Skyrocket; Trend Expected to Continue

John Lister's picture

A research group says the number of people using mobile video calling rose 50 percent last year. It forecasts that will continue to rise rapidly even when life returns to a post-pandemic normal.

Juniper Research estimates 1.8 billion mobile service customers used a mobile video calling service in 2020 compared with 1.2 billion the previous year. That's almost certainly a direct result of more people working remotely and/or making social video calls, rather than meeting friends in person. (Source: techradar.com)

Handheld Video Calls Convenient For Some

It might seem ironic that more people are using mobile devices for calls while not being on the move. However, it's likely that while many people have used webcams in laptops, others have found a phone or tablet more convenient and comfortable, or may simply not have a camera on a desktop computer.

While the pandemic has certainly sped up this growth, Juniper reckons many more of us will use mobile video calls in the coming years. It's forecasting that 1.8 billion figure will reach 4.5 billion by 2025, including 70 percent of people in North America and Europe who own mobile devices. (Source: businesswire.com)

Numbers In Question

Among the factors Juniper lists as boosting mobile video calls are wider availability of 5G mobile connections, increasing smartphone ownership, and people making video calls directly from non-traditional devices such as smart screen gadgets like the Google Home and Amazon Echo Show.

The numbers may need to be taken with a pinch of salt, however. For example, the research lists the current number of "mobile subscribers" at over 8 million, which is more than the number of people in the world. That's almost certainly double-counting of people who have both a work and personal phone, or still have old pre-paid plans that are technically still active but aren't used.

What's Your Opinion?

Did you use video calling more in 2020 than in previous years? Which devices do you use most often for video calls? Do you buy that the number of people using video calling will continue to rise rapidly or have we hit a natural peak?

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Comments

Navy vet's picture

All my contacts are Luddites and can barely answer a normal call, or even a text.

buzzallnight's picture

I have an old prepaid plan
THAT IS USED!!!!!!!!!

petershaw's picture

My gut feeling is that there are more than 8 million people in the world.