Ericsson Mobility Report today said it expects the number of 5G subscriptions to reach 2.6 billion within the next six years.
The report projects that 5G will cover up to 65 percent of the population in 2025 and handle 45 percent of global mobile data traffic.
The Ericsson report reveals that most service providers have priced 5G packages at about 20 percent higher than their nearest available 4G offering.
2019 is the year leading communications service providers in Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, and North America switched on their 5G networks. South Korea has already seen a big 5G uptake since its April 2019 launch. More than three million subscriptions were collectively recorded by the country’s service providers by the end of September 2019.
China’s launch of 5G in late October has led to an update of the estimated 5G subscriptions for the end of 2019, from 10 million to 13 million.
Average monthly data-traffic-per-smartphone is forecast to increase from 7.2 GB to 24 GB by the end of 2025, in part driven by new consumer behavior, such as Virtual Reality (VR) streaming.
Fredrik Jejdling, head of Networks, Ericsson, said: “It is encouraging to see that 5G now has broad support from almost all device makers. In 2020, 5G-compatible devices will enter the volume market, which will scale up 5G adoption.”
5G subscription uptake is expected to be significantly faster than that of LTE. The most rapid uptake is expected in North America with 74 percent of mobile subscriptions in the region forecast to be 5G by the end of 2025. North East Asia is expected to follow at 56 percent, with Europe at 55 percent.
Total number of cellular IoT connections will reach five billion by the end of 2025 from 1.3 billion by the end of 2019 – a compound annual growth rate of 25 percent. NB-IoT and Cat-M technologies are estimated to account for 52 percent of these cellular IoT connections in 2025.