Ericsson Mobility Report Predicts Historic Growth for 5G by 2024
Every wireless industry analyst and their mother expects that the 5G rollout is going to be massive for the global consumer and business population. We’ve been covering the latest communication and networking technology for the better part of the past two years now, and if one thing’s become clear in that time it’s that 5G will impact products and services related to the Internet of Things in ways that we can’t even begin to fathom right now.
But what about the rollout and availability of 5G? What we’ve seen thus far is communications firms bringing fixed, residential service online in various “test cities” over the past year. There’s been talk about smartphone makers and those same carriers working on developing hardware that can put 5G in our pockets. But aside from Verizon’s recent test of the first mobile 5G signal, we haven’t heard a whole heck of a lot else—aside from the occasional speculative report
That’s what makes the latest Ericsson Mobility Report so fascinating to comb through. Ericsson, which has solidified itself as one of the leading providers of 5G infrastructure hardware, said it expects 5G to reach more than 40 percent of the global population and account for 1.5 billion subscriptions by the end of 2024. If true, Ericsson’s estimates would make the 5G rollout the fastest of any cellular technology ever.
Key drivers in that growth, according to Ericsson, include increased network capacity, lower cost per gigabyte, and new use case requirements. In its report, Ericsson noted that mobile data traffic grew 79 percent between Q3 2017 and Q3 2018. North America leads the way in average gigabyte usage per month at 8.6 GBs (roughly 12 hours of streaming HD quality video in a given month—or, you know, a season of Game of Thrones). And further, total mobile data traffic globally is expected to increase by a factor of five between 2018 and 2024, Ericsson said.
That level of consumption will be fueled (and aided) by the fast rollout of 5G. By 2024, according to Ericsson, 5G should account for roughly 25 percent of all mobile data traffic. North America and Northeast Asia are expected to lead the 5G adoption curve. Ericsson expects 5G to account for 55 percent of all mobile data in the U.S. by 2024. In the Asian region that figure could reach 43 percent.
But, like we’ve been told all along, 5G is about far more than just better smartphone data speeds. The technology could bring on a global IoT revolution, which is exactly what Ericsson is predicting. By 2024—just six years from now—the firm expects that 4.1 billion cellular IoT connections will be active, up from 1 billion this year. The use cases for those technologies, the company said, include things like utilities, smart cities, logistics networks, agriculture, manufacturing, and wearables.
Needless to say, we know 5G is coming, but the pace at which the technology could actually reach us is on pace to be rather historic.
What We’re Reading
- Google ditches YouTube Premium subscription requirement in order to watch YouTube Originals—most will be free to everyone. (PC Mag)
- For a brief moment on Tuesday, Microsoft surpassed Apple as the world’s most valuable company. (WSJ)
- A Sony game cartridge patent filing hints that the company may be developing a Vita successor. (The Verge)