5G subscriptions in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region are expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.5 percent over the forecast period of 2021-2026.
The growth is primarily driven by national 5G strategies/policies/action plans adopted by several countries, outlining their vision and guidelines to establish 5G ecosystems, says GlobalData.
4G / LTE will remain the leading mobile technology in the region, by subscriber volume, through 2026. Adoption of 5G services will reduce LTE’s share of total mobile subscriptions from 59.8 percent in 2021 to 47.4 percent by 2026.
5G’s share of the total mobile subscriptions in the region will grow from 17.6 percent in 2021 to 45.8 percent by 2026 with all the developed APAC countries boasting commercial 5G services and 5G network expansions.
Most of the emerging APAC countries that have not yet launched 5G services are having the plans to launch soon.
The APAC region hosts some of the world’s most advanced 5G markets such as China, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea. GlobalData estimates China’s share of the total 5G subscriptions in the APAC at 89.3 percent at the end of 2021, with over 50 percent of the country’s population subscribing to the 5G service.
Singapore’s telecom regulator IMDA allocated a fund of SGD30m (US$22m) to help create a dynamic 5G ecosystem across the country in January 2021.
Three major MNOs in South Korea – SK Telecom, KT, and LG U+ – agreed in July 2020 to invest KRW25.7 trillion (US$23bn) in the development of 5G infrastructure until 2022, while the government agreed to provide support to operators with tax credits.
“Smart city initiatives across several countries in the APAC, particularly China with IoT applications in areas like e-government, e-healthcare, smart traffic management and smart power grids will drive strong case for 5G in the region,” Deepa Dhingra, Senior Telecom Analyst at GlobalData, said.