5G will be 15% of global mobile sector by 2025 as 5G launches boom – GSMA

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5G is on track to account for 15 per cent of global mobile connections by 2025, as the number of 5G network launches and compatible devices ramps up this year, according to a new report by mobile industry member group GSMA.

The 2019 edition of GSMA’s flagship Mobile Economy report – The Mobile Economy 2019, published at MWC 2019 – reveals that a further 16 major markets worldwide will switch on commercial 5G networks this year, following on from the first 5G launches in South Korea and the US in 2018. GSMA reports that mobile operators worldwide are currently investing around US$160 billion per year (capex) on expanding and upgrading their networks, despite regulatory and competitive pressures.

Mats Granryd, director general of the GSMA, commented, “The arrival of 5G forms a major part of the world’s move towards an era of Intelligent Connectivity, which alongside developments in the Internet of Things, big data and artificial intelligence, is poised to be a key driver of economic growth over the coming years.

“The arrival of 5G forms a major part of the world’s move towards an era of Intelligent Connectivity, which alongside developments in the Internet of Things, big data and artificial intelligence, is poised to be a key driver of economic growth over the coming years,” he said.

“While 5G will transform businesses and provide an array of exciting new services, mobile technology is also helping to close the connectivity gap. We will connect more than a billion new people to the mobile internet over the next few years, spurring adoption of mobile-based tools and solutions in areas such as agriculture, education and healthcare, which will improve livelihoods of people around the world.”

Key findings of report include:

  • The number of 5G connections will reach 1.4 billion by 2025 – 15 per cent of the global total.
  • 4G will continue to see strong growth over this period, accounting for almost 60 per cent of global connections by 2025.
  • The number of global IoT connections will triple to 25 billion by 2025, global IoT revenue will quadruple to US$1.1 trillion;
  • One billion new unique mobile subscribershave been added in the four years after 2013, bringing the expected total to 5.1 billion by the end of 2018.
  • More than 700 million new subscribers are forecast to be added over the next seven years.
  • An additional 1.4 billion people will start using the mobile internet over the next seven years, bringing the total number of mobile subscribers globally to 5 billion by 2025.

The GSMA report adds that mobile technologies and services generated 4.6 per cent of GDP globally last year, a contribution that amounted to US$3.9 trillion of economic value added3. This contribution is forecast to grow to US$4.8 trillion (4.8 per cent of GDP) by 2023 as countries around the globe increasingly benefit from the improvements in productivity and efficiency brought about by increased take-up of mobile services. The mobile ecosystem also supported almost 32 million jobs in 2018 (directly and indirectly) and made a substantial contribution to the funding of the public sector, with more than US$500 billion raised through general taxation.

Looking further ahead, it is forecast that 5G will contribute US$2.2 trillion to the global economy over the next 15 years, with key sectors such as manufacturing, utilities, and professional and financial services benefitting the most from the new technology.

For more information, visit: www.gsma.com/mobileeconomy

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