Analyst: Mobile data will continue boom in '09

There will be more than 36 million laptops connected to mobile data networks in Western Europe in 2009, compared to the 26 million estimated for the end of this year, according to market research company CCS Insight.

"It's a little bit more growth than what we have seen this year. Overall, next year you will see a push by all the carriers, but not just mobile carriers, but also from alternative providers as well," said Paolo Pescatore, analyst at CCS Insight.

For example, in Sweden, cable operator Com Hem is collaborating with 3 to offer subscribers mobile as well as cable broadband. The goal is for them to become one-stop shops for broadband, according to Pescatore.

Another big trend during 2009 will be packaging of mobile broadband in various new ways.

"Many mobile operators also have fixed-line assets, so they are very much in a position to package multiple access technologies and compete quite aggressively," said Pescatore.

The mobile operators will also start to package mobile phones and laptop connectivity.