The latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report, released in June 2023, reveals that despite challenges posed by geopolitics and macroeconomic slowdown in certain markets, communication service providers worldwide are persistently investing in 5G technology. The report demonstrates that the adoption of 5G subscriptions in North America has surpassed previous expectations, with the region leading in global 5G subscription penetration at 41 per cent by the end of 2022.
The study further indicates a consistent rise in 5G subscriptions across all regions, projected to reach over 1.5 billion by the end of 2023. Concurrently, global mobile network data traffic continues to escalate, with an anticipated monthly average usage per smartphone exceeding 20 GB by the end of 2023.
Additionally, the report highlights sustained revenue growth in prominent 5G markets. Fredrik Jejdling, the Executive Vice President and Head of Networks at Ericsson, emphasises the positive impact of 5G technology on communication service providers, stating, “The global adoption of 5G technology has exceeded one billion subscriptions, resulting in favorable revenue growth for leading 5G markets. The increase in 5G subscriptions correlates directly with enhanced service revenue. Over the past two years, the introduction of 5G services in the top twenty markets has generated a seven percent revenue boost. This trend underscores the increasing value of 5G, benefiting both users and service providers.”
Globally, approximately 240 communication service providers (CSPs) have introduced commercial 5G services, with around 35 deploying or launching 5G standalone (SA) networks. Notably, CSPs commonly offer various bundled packages that include popular entertainment services, such as television, music streaming, or cloud gaming platforms. Presently, about 58 per cent of 5G service providers offer such bundled packages in diverse formats.
Moreover, the report identifies 5G as a catalyst for innovation in mobile service packaging. This is exemplified by the increasing number of CSPs offering Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) services over 5G, with more than 100 providers, accounting for approximately 40 per cent of FWA service providers, currently delivering FWA over 5G. FWA is experiencing solid growth in terms of the number of mobile service providers offering it, the proportion of providers offering FWA over 5G, the proportion of CSPs implementing speed-based tariff structures, and the volume of traffic served, as both the number of connections and traffic per connection continue to increase. By 2028, it is projected that 5G will account for nearly 80 per cent of all FWA connections.
The June 2023 Ericsson Mobility Report also includes four comprehensive articles exploring various topics, including the influence of traffic patterns on network evolution, the potential for differentiated services in 5G networks, the advancements facilitated by mobile networks in augmented reality (AR) adoption, and the readiness of mobile networks to deliver a superior quality of experience for new services.