Ericsson: 5G will reach 1.5 billion subscriptions by 2024

5G is expected to reach more than 40% of the global population and 1.5 billion subscriptions by the end of 2024 making it the fastest generation of cellular technology to be rolled out on a global scale, according to the latest Ericsson Mobility Report.

Key drivers for 5G deployment include increased network capacity, lower cost per gigabyte and new use case requirements, with North America and North East Asia leading the 5G uptake

  • In North America, 5G subscriptions will account for 55% of all mobile subscriptions by the end of 2024.
  • In North East Asia, the corresponding forecast figure is more than 43%.
  • In Western Europe, 5G is forecast to account for 30% of mobile subscriptions by the end of 2024.
  • Of the 4.1 billion cellular IoT connections forecast for 2024, North East Asia is expected to account for 2.7 billion – a figure reflecting both the ambition and size of the cellular IoT market in this region.
China is driving the 5G mobile data requirement
  • Mobile data traffic in Q3 2018 grew close to 79% year-on-year, which is the highest rate since 2013.
  • China has experienced traffic growth per smartphone of around 140% for the past year, making it the second highest in data traffic per smartphone at 7.3 gigabytes per month (comparable to streaming HD video for around 10 hours per month).
  • North America still has the highest data traffic per smartphone, set to reach 8.6 gigabytes per month by the end of this year.
  • Between 2018-2024, total mobile data traffic is expected to increase by a factor of five, with 5G networks projected to carry 25 percent of mobile traffic by the end of the period.

As 5G now hits the market, its coverage build-out and uptake in subscriptions are projected to be faster than for previous generations. At the same time, cellular IoT continues to grow strongly. What we are seeing is the start of fundamental changes that will impact not just the consumer market but many industries.

Fredrik Jejdling, EVP and Head of Business Area Networks, Ericsson