Ericsson said that 230 telcos have launched 5G services to date, with more than 700 5G smartphone models announced or launched commercially
Global 5G subscriptions are forecast to reach one billion by the end of this year, and five billion by the end of 2028, despite current and developing economic challenges in many parts of the world, according to the latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report.
The report also forecasts a higher than expected expansion in the fixed wireless access (FWA) segment at a global level.
The Swedish vendor noted that FWA is one of the major early 5G use cases, particularly in regions with unserved or underserved broadband markets.
FWA is forecast to grow at 19% year-on-year through the 2022-28 period, to reach 300 million connections by the end of 2028. This growth will be chiefly driven by accelerated FWA plans in India, and expected growth in other emerging markets.
Ericsson highlighted that more than three-quarters of communications service providers (CSPs) surveyed in more than 100 countries currently offer FWA services. Almost one-third of CSPs are offering FWA over 5G, compared to one-fifth a year ago. Almost 40% of the new 5G FWA launches in the past 12 months have been in emerging markets, according to the Ericsson report.
In the 5G segment, the report showed that nearly 110 million subscriptions were added globally between July-September 2022, bringing the total to about 870 million.
The reasons behind this growth in the 5G segment include the growing availability of devices from multiple vendors, with prices falling faster than for 4G, and China’s large early 5G deployments.
North America and North East Asia continue to see strong 5G growth, with 5G subscription penetration in the regions expected to reach about 35% by end of 2022, according to the report.
Globally, almost 230 CSPs have launched 5G services to date, with more than 700 5G smartphone models announced or launched commercially, according to the report.
By the end of 2028, 5G subscribers are forecast to account for 55% of all mobile subscriptions at a global level. In that same timeframe, 5G population coverage is projected to reach 85% while 5G networks are expected to carry around 70 percent of mobile traffic.
Fredrik Jejdling, EVP and head of networks at Ericsson, said: “Communications Service providers continue to deploy 5G and the momentum for Fixed Wireless Access is accelerating. Moreover, global mobile network data traffic is practically doubling every two years. As described in this edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report, service providers are taking actions to deploy the latest generation of energy-efficient radio hardware and software, increase the use of renewable energy sources, and operate site infrastructure intelligently to reduce the environmental impact.”
The report also forecasts a continued growth for 4G technology, with an expected global base of 5.2 billion subscribers by the end of this year.
Overall mobile subscriptions are expected to reach 8.4 billion by the end of 2022, and 9.2 billion by the end of 2028. At the end of 2022, 6.6 billion smartphone subscriptions are estimated, accounting for about 79% of all mobile phone subscriptions, according to the Ericsson Mobility Report.