The number of LTE connections added was 863 million in the first quarter of 2017 to reach the total LTE subscriber base to 2.16 billion.
North America region achieved 308.5 million LTE subscriptions in Q1 2017 with some of the highest penetration rates, extensive coverage and largest market share for LTE in the world.
Latin America doubled LTE connections to 139.8 million from 68.6 million in Q1 2017 and grew LTE market share by 100 percent from 9.7 percent to 20 percent.
Global LTE market share increased 11 percent to 28 percent compared to all other mobile wireless technologies in the first quarter of 2017, said 5G Americas.
There will be close to 2.5 billion LTE connections by the end of 2017, 3 billion in 2018 and 4.2 billion connections in 2020, 4.7 billion in 2021 (forecast includes M2M), according to Ovum.
There will be 25 million 5G connections worldwide by 2021. North America will have 11 million 5G connections in 2021.
“There is great progress in the development of 5G by operators, vendors and 3GPP standards,” said Chris Pearson, President of 5G Americas.
LTE achieved a penetration rate of 85 percent with 308.5 million connections compared to the population of 361.1 million in North America. In North America, LTE penetration is expected to pass 100 percent in 2018.
In North America, LTE is forecast to reach 452 million connections including M2M in 2021.
There will be 11 million 5G connections in 2021 – nearly 44 percent of all global 5G connections – in North America.
Latin America and the Caribbean
LTE’s market share increased from 9.7 percent to 20 percent in March 2017, more than doubling in the Latin America and the Caribbean region. LTE connections rose significantly at 16.5 percent growth in one quarter alone.
In Latin America and the Caribbean, there are 140 million LTE connections; 71.2 million new LTE connections added.
LTE is forecast to reach 171 million connections including M2M and a 24 percent share of market in 2017.
LTE is forecast to reach 449 million connections including M2M and a 58 percent share of market by the end of 2021.
“LTE is experiencing high growth rates in developing areas of the world,” said Kristin Paulin, senior analyst at Ovum.
There were 2.16 billion LTE connections out of a total of 7.7 billion total cellular connections worldwide.