Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) just reported earnings of SEK 0.40 per share, or about $0.60 per American depositary receipt (ADR) stub. That's 22% greater than its year-ago take of $0.49 per ADR; in constant currencies, it's more like a 12% EPS gain. Ericsson's success was an exercise in global reach, with weak European and North American markets and a fading U.S. dollar balanced out by 30% sales growth in Asia and a 7% revenue gain in Latin America.

Ericsson's growth hotspots are sometimes surprising. The usual suspects -- China, India, Japan -- are joined by GSM orders from Bangladesh and major network rollouts in sub-Saharan Africa. Russia is a dead spot right now, but only because the service providers there are hammering out their own GSM implementation plans. Brazilian and Mexican networks are looking at 3G equipment. And so it goes.

It boils down to an overall 8% annual revenue boost. Wider margins turn that into a 12% operating income gain, and you've already seen the bottom-line impact. A major driver of all this growth is a worldwide thirst for high-bandwidth mobile services.

Ericsson says that the average traffic on its monitored networks has doubled in the last six months. The trend should only continue as network providers such as America Movil (NYSE:AMX) and Vodafone (NYSE:VOD) roll out data access plans, mobile music downloads, handset video services, and all the other goodies you'd expect from a modern cell phone.

Luckily -- or smartly -- Ericsson's low-end infrastructure equipment is easily upgraded to 3G capabilities, providing a steady stream of incremental revenues as the Bangladeshis ask for more bandwidth.

Stateside, the current star customer is AT&T (NYSE:T), which just picked the Swedish network enabler and Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU) as equipment and field service providers for the next phase of its fiber-optic U-verse rollout. Let's see if Ma Bell Jr. can help the Swedes overcome that plummeting exchange rate effect next year, when that implementation starts in earnest.

Standard & Poor's upgraded Ericsson's credit rating a couple of notches last month, impressed by the mobile networker's "remarkably strong capital structure and liquidity." It expects the company to keep growing at least as fast as the global cell phone industry itself for the foreseeable future. That's a nice vote of confidence from a seasoned observer, don't you think?

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Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here, and he doesn't own a cell phone. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like. Foolish disclosure is always there for you, wherever you may go.