5G smartphones did not shine due to slow 5G network growth

5G smartphones will account for less than 1 percent of all handsets sold globally in 2019. 5G phone sales will take off in 2020. 5G smartphone sales will exceed 1 billion globally by 2025, Strategy Analytics said.
5G smartphone growth chart
5G smartphone demand did not grow because telecom operators have launched just 34 5G networks worldwide, according to 5G Americas report earlier. Price of 5G smartphone was yet another big factor that determined the slow growth for 5G smartphones.

Ovum’s forecast predicts 156 million 5G connections worldwide and 32 million in North America by end of 2021.

Strategy Analytics said 5G smartphones will equal nearly half of all phones sold within 5 years, said the report. South Korea is leading the 5G race at the moment but China intends to quickly become the global 5G leader.

“The ability of the mobile phone industry to deliver lower-cost 5G smartphones will be critical to allow China to reach this goal next year,” Ken Hyers, director at Strategy, said in a statement.

There will be more mid-range 5G smartphones available, especially in China, by the end of 2020. Chipset major Qualcomm has already announced that its new chipsets will support mid-range 5G smartphones.

Less than 1 percent of phones sold in 2019 will be 5G devices, but that share will grow to nearly 10 percent in 2020.

“Consumers do not want to spend top dollar on a device when there are few usable networks yet. Operators must widen 5G availability significantly in order for the technology to become attractive for consumers,” Ken Hyers said.

Korea’s Samsung is the current 5G smartphone leader. Samsung has managed to take the lead in 5G predominantly due strong sales in South Korea, as well as by expanding its share in 5G markets like the US.

LG, Huawei, OPPO, vivo and Xiaomi are also among the first vendors to the global 5G smartphone market. 5G smartphone sales will skyrocket, led by China, the US and other developed nations in Asia and Western Europe, from 2020 onwards.

Baburajan K