Even today it is not embarrassing to make a phone call: Hungarians spent 28 billion minutes on the phone in 2021

The Mobile Market Report has been published

Published: 21 December 2022

In the beginning, mobile phones were almost only for making calls. Later came SMS and the mobile internet, and then our phones got “smarter”, but despite all the features, voice calls are still a popular service. This is also confirmed by the data of the Mobile Market Report compiled by the National Media and Infocommunications Authority.

In 2021, with around 9.5 million active SIM cards suitable for voice calls, Hungarians made 8.5 billion calls and spoken for a total of 28 billion minutes in Hungary. This means that on average, each SIM card received 74 calls per month and 3 minutes 20 seconds of voice traffic per call, according to the research conducted by the NMHH.

In the quarters of 2015-2016, which constituted the starting period of the years under review (i.e. the period between the fourth quarter of 2015 and the second quarter of 2022), the average number of minutes of calls per SIM card was 178 minutes per month, rising to 245 minutes per month by 2021-2022. Traffic peaked in 2020 and has not increased significantly since then. In addition to longer-term trends, there has also been seasonal fluctuations in traffic from 2020 onwards. Subscribers typically made fewer mobile calls in the third quarter of the year.

The traffic data included in the Mobile Market Report is also available broken down by subscriber type and subscription type. Residential prepaid subscribers made few calls (28 calls/month) and had short talk times (1.2 minutes/call). This is understandable, since above a certain call volume, it is no longer worthwhile to choose a traffic-based prepaid subscription. It is also interesting that non-residential and residential post paid subscribers behave differently. Non-residential customers make more calls (113 calls/month) than residential customers (83 calls/month), but residential customers talk longer (3.8 minutes/call) than non-residential customers (3.1 minutes/call). We seem to spend more time on private conversations than on work-related ones.

The NMHH experts also examined separately the number and length of calls that underlie the change in traffic. The number of calls per SIM card did not change trend-wise over the period, and seasonal effects were not significant either. However, the type of subscription had real significance: customers with a prepaid subscription made significantly fewer calls, while non-residential post paid subscribers made more calls.

While the specific number of calls did not, the typical length of calls increased significantly over time and seasonality was also evident. Phone calls were longer in the fourth quarter, but especially in the first quarter, and shorter in the third. It has also been shown that during periods when the number of calls decreased, the length of calls increased. Residential post paid subscribers spent more time per call than residential prepaid and non-residential post paid subscribers.

Overall, we still like to make phone calls, and despite the many messaging options, we are making longer and longer calls to people we know.