Mobile subscribers to join two billion club this year

But 72 per cent of people haven't yet got a phone to go with their embarrassing ringtone

But 72 per cent of people haven't yet got a phone to go with their embarrassing ringtone

The number of mobile subscriptions will pass the two billion mark this year.

Research from Informa Telecoms and Media predicts the two billion mark will be broken in the third quarter of 2005, with 350 million new mobile users expected to sign up in the course of this year.

Most of the fresh grow is expected to come from China, Indonesia and Russia, while a number of mature markets, including Ireland and Denmark, will boost growth by reaching penetration levels of more than 100 per cent.

According to Informa, worldwide mobile penetration levels are at 28 per cent, providing lots of room for future growth.

A separate study by research firm Analysys recently found that mobile penetration across Europe has already reached 90 per cent and is expected to hit 98 per cent by 2006.