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5G in every major region by 2021

According to Ovum’s latest subscriptions report, 5G will launch in 2020 and will be available in every major region worldwide in 2021. With this in mind, 5G World research manager, Sonal Ghelani explores why it’s so important for the industry to come together today in order to fulfill this promise.

5G networks are fast becoming known as the future of wireless technology, enabling the connected world, supporting multiple devices and services at one time. This will require superfast connectivity, low latent, reliable networks.

5G promises to transform the way we look at the telecom, technology and enterprise industries, bringing the ecosystem together to create new partnerships, new revenue generating business models, and exceptional services for consumers.

Ovum’s recent subscriptions report predicts that 5G will launch in 2020 and will have 25 million subscriptions worldwide by the end of 2021, primarily for fixed and mobile broadband services. Ovum also predict that more than 50 operators will be offering 5G services in close to 30 countries by the end of 2021. The majority of these 5G subscriptions will be concentrated in a handful of leading 5G markets - including the US, China, Japan and South Korea. These top four markets will account for more than 80% of the world’s 5G subscriptions in 2021.

With this in mind, challenges such as 5G infrastructure, core network, RAN, standards, spectrum allocation and where LTE stands in the 5G era, all need to be addressed today.

Over the past decade LTE has been the focus for mobile operators and key solution providers. For now, LTE is a superfast reliable network, enabling many connected services along with capabilities such as VoLTE, ViLTE, VoWiFi and more.

4G is commercially deployed worldwide, but the investment made for this network has not yet reached its peak. This leaves uncertainty around where LTE stands in the 5G era.

Currently, telecom operators - both fixed and mobile - are trialling what they think is 5G. We expect to see fixed operators moving to enhanced mobile broadband networks and mobile operators to enable M2M capabilities. These trials are working towards setting 5G standards, which are due to be confirmed/set by the end of 2017. A number of operators have announced plans to launch pre-standard “5G services” before 2020.

Spectrum allocation will also be made, to ensure the bandwidth that 5G services require are available once 5G is deployed.

Much work and investment still needs to go into 5G R&D before the 2020 vision becomes a reality, and many challenges need to be addressed. 5G World 2017, part of TechXLR8 at London Tech Week, aims to bring together the full 5G ecosystem to tackle these topics in detail. It will be the meeting point for industry leaders in the 5G and LTE community to collaborate, explore future strategies, and do business. Find out how you can get involved and shape the conversation.

5G World 2017

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