Ericsson Mobility Report:
The strong momentum for 5G continues.
5G is on a roll. During the second quarter of 2019 several markets switched on 5G following the introduction of new 5G-compatible smartphones. Some communications service providers have set ambitious targets of reaching up to 90 percent population coverage within the first year. As 5G devices increasingly become available and more service providers launch 5G, over 10 million 5G subscriptions1 are projected worldwide by the end of 2019. Looking ahead, in the first five years, 5G subscription uptake is expected to be significantly faster than that of LTE, following its launch back in 2009.
On a global level, 5G network deployments are expected to ramp up during 2020, creating the foundation for massive adoption of 5G subscriptions. Most new 5G subscribers will be users trading up their 4G handsets to 5G-compatible devices following 5G services launching in their market. By the end of the period, it is also likely that many young users in mature markets will get a 5G smartphone as their first device.
Given the momentum in the market, we have increased our forecast for 5G subscriptions, and now expect there to be 1.9 billion 5G subscriptions for enhanced mobile broadband by the end of 2024. This will account for over 20 percent of all mobile subscriptions at that time. The peak of LTE subscriptions is projected for 2022, at around 5.3 billion subscriptions, with the number declining slowly thereafter. However, LTE will remain the dominant mobile access technology by subscription for the foreseeable future, and it is projected to have nearly 5 billion subscriptions at the end of 2024.
8.8 billion Cellular IoT connections and fixed wireless access (FWA) subscriptions supporting new use cases will come in addition to the mobile subscriptions shown in the graph in the report.
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