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Mobile broadband is the major growth area in the global communications industry, a new report claims.

In its State of Broadband Report 2013, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) says the marriage of mobile with modern-day internet "is opening up new vistas of opportunity".

According to the organisation, mobile broadband may well "bridge the gap between the connected and the unconnected".

The ITU said the "explosive growth" of mobile and wireless, in both the number of connections and the sophistication of devices, is leading to "strong and continuing growth in mobile data traffic".

Cisco has estimated that global mobile data traffic grew 70 per cent in 2012, reaching 885 petabytes per month at the end of the year.

In order to ensure mobile performance levels remain high for tablet and dongle users, the ITU believes spectrum efficiency must improve by up to tenfold.

"In any and every country, spectrum is a vital part of a coordinated broadband policy for universalising broadband," the body stated.

"[It] deserves careful consideration at the national and international levels."

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