According to new forecasts, 5G connections will cross the 1 billion-mark some time in 2022.
Recently, two of China’s three telcos have published their numbers for 2021. As such, those reports work to corroborate CCS Insight’s estimate that China will drive the next-gen network globally. However, CCS notes that despite being an “early trailblazer”, China does not lead in terms of market penetration. That honor belongs to South Korea, where it will account for 30% of total mobile connections by the end of 2021.
The analyst also predicted that come the holiday season, on the back of strong smartphone sales, US will leapfrog China as well in market penetration. The US will reach 25%; China will complete the podium with 24% of all connections being 5G. However, it has warned that given the widespread chip shortage, the adoption can take a temporary hit across the world.
Marina Koytcheva, VP, Forecasting, CCS Insight, said, “things are looking up on that front; the global mobile phone market is projected to recover in 2022, and prices of 5G handsets continue to fall steadily”.
She added, “Our forecast for 3.6 billion 5G connections worldwide by 2025 is still firmly on track”.
Europe Lags Behind its North American and Asian Counterparts
On the flipside, Western Europe will not be a large part of the growth over the next few years. CCS Insight said that the region lags behind due to delayed spectrum auctions and weakened demand for mobiles amid the pandemic. Also, CCS said that slow decision-making on the governments’ part regarding Huawei has also resulted in this situation.
The slow start means that the region will have to wait till 2024 to reach over 50% market penetration by the new networks.
However, according to the analyst, 5G will do well over the next decade. Given the post-Covid situation, and increasing concern over Chinese telecom vendors, the fact that by 2025, 3.6 billion mobile connection will be on 5G remains a feat.