The study by International Telecommunications Union concludes that the number of mobile phones will rise from 6 billion now to 7.3 billion in 2014, compared to the global population of 7 billion, Silicon India reported.
Mark Roden, CEO of ding, the international mobile top-up provider, said mobile phones have the ability to drastically improve lives in some of the poorest parts of the world where communications are restricted. However, he warns the announcement may not be as sweet as it sounds.
"No matter how many mobiles exist - they are a useless tool unless they have credit. We are excited at the growth of mobile phones across the world and our mission now, is to help ensure these phones stay topped-up," he said in a statement.
With more than USD 400 billion transferred in money remittances every year, international top-up is an easy, fast and safe alternative to support home.
Over 100 countries have the number of cell phone accounts exceeding their population. Russia, with almost 250 million cell phone accounts, has 1.8 times as many cell phones as people, and Brazil, with 240 million accounts has 1.2 times as many cell phones as people, International Telecommunications Union study has found.
Researchers at ding have found that mobile phone owners in developing countries will forgo groceries to top-up their phones and confirmed that as many as 44 percent of ding customers consider the service a "need", a statement released here said.
Mobile phones play an important role in developing countries where, despite 60 percent of people living on less than USD 2 a day, the majority own mobile phones.