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Over 1 billion people globally will access 5G coverage by next month

Chinese woman is looking to the right side, traffic in the background.
Jordan Major

A new report estimates that by the end of 2020 over one billion people globally or 15% of the world population will have access to the 5G technology.

The report by telecommunication firm Ericsson dubbed Ericsson Mobility Report November 2020 notes that in the next six years about 3.5 billion people will have access to 5G. 

The increased uptake is fuelled by China as more service providers continue to establish the necessary infrastructure. Notably, the Swedish firm projects that the global 5G subscriptions by the end of 2020 will stand at 220 million. This comes as service providers engage in fierce competition to win over customers as well as the emergence of low priced 5G phones. 

Ericsson Vice President Fredrik Jejdling has highlighted some of the factors fuelling this year’s high 5G uptake. According to Jejdling: 

“This year has seen society take a big leap towards digitalization. The pandemic has highlighted the impact connectivity has on our lives and has acted as a catalyst for rapid change, which is also clearly visible in this latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report. 5G is entering the next phase, when new devices and applications make the most out of the benefits it provides, while service providers continue to build out 5G. Mobile networks are critical infrastructure for many aspects of everyday life and 5G will be key to future economic prosperity.”

Ericsson Mobility Report November 2020.

North America to lead in 5G subscriptions

In terms of regional uptake, North America is projected to close the year, with about 4% of 5G subscriptions. The region continues to witness intense commercialization of the technology. Based on these activities North America will have about 80% of 5G subscribers by 2026. The figure will be the highest globally. 

Ericsson projects Europe to end the year with 1% of the region subscribed to 5G. Notably, Europe had a delay in the auction of the radio spectrum needed for 5G connectivity.

The Ericsson report also notes that the value of the 5G network will also depend on the use case application. Some of the use cases include the Internet of Things. Additionally, cloud gaming will continue evolving thanks to the 5G network. 

The 5G technology is highly attractive as it enables unprecedented levels of connectivity. The network is an upgrade of 4G technology. It comes with superfast speeds, low latency communication, massive machine-type communications, high reliability, and efficient energy usage.

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