The Punch

Global 5G subscripti­ons’ll hit 580 million by December – report

- Temitayo Jaiyeola

FIFTH generation technology subscripti­ons will reach 580 million subscripti­ons by the end of 2021, after growing by 70 million during the first quarter of 2021, a new report has said.

The ‘Ericsson Mobility Report’ said more than 160 global service providers had launched commercial 5G services.

It said North East Asia had the highest 5G subscripti­on penetratio­n, followed by North America, Gulf Cooperatio­n Council countries and Western Europe.

The report added that by 2026, North America would have the highest share of 5G subscripti­ons.

It also said that adoption of 5G was expected to be faster than that of 4G, which launched in 2009.

The PUNCH had reported on July 15 that the Nigerian Communicat­ions Commission said it would auction the 5G spectrum by the fourth quarter of 2021.

The Executive Vicechairm­an of the NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, said, “The government will provide an enabling environmen­t for 5G deployment, but the MNOS will determine their own deployment strategies, subject to alignment with approved policies and other regulatory instrument­s in force.

“Securing spectrum for 5G is an antecedent for any operator to commit serious investment to 5G infrastruc­ture. This makes it imperative for the spectrum allocation and assignment process to be concluded as early as possible.

“The following timeline is proposed as optimal in the policy document 5G Spectrum Allocation (Q2 2021), 5G Spectrum Auction (Q4 2021), 5G Spectrum Assignment (Q1 2022), and Commercial­isation of 5G Spectrum (Q4 2022).”

Danbatta added that 5G was a catalyst for digital transforma­tion in Nigeria and around the world, as it would digitalise and greatly impact the economy of the country.

According to the Ericsson report, 5G subscripti­ons are likely to reach one billion two years earlier than 4G.

“This is because of China’s earlier engagement with 5G compared to 4G, as well as the timely availabili­ty of devices from several vendors,” it said.

The report said that by the end of 2026, there would likely be 3.5 billion 5G subscripti­ons globally, accounting for around 40 per cent of all mobile subscripti­ons at that time.

The report added that in Q1 2021, global 4G subscripti­ons increased by approximat­ely 100 million, exceeding 4.6 billion, and equaling 58 per cent of all mobile subscripti­ons.

According to the report, 4G subscripti­ons will peak at 4.8 billion subscripti­ons by the end of 2021, before declining to around 3.9 billion subscripti­ons by the end of 2026 as more subscriber­s migrate to 5G.

The report said global net addition of mobile subscripti­ons was quite low during Q1 2021, at 59 million. India had the most net additions (26 million), followed by China (six million) and South Africa (two million).

The PUNCH had reported on May 4, 2021 that the number of active subscriber­s in the telecommun­ications industry reduced by 12.06 million in the first quarter of this year, according to the latest data from the NCC.

The NCC data showed that the subscriber base dropped to N192.08 million in March 2021 from 204.15 million in December 2020.

According to the Ericson report, smartphone penetratio­n is on a rise, and subscripti­ons associated with smartphone­s account for about 76 per cent of all mobile phone subscripti­ons.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria