Global 5G subscribers are set to rise rapidly from 4 million at the end of Q3 to 12.9 million by the end of the year, according to a study by Ovum for industry association 5G Americas. That figure will then accelerate to 1.3 billion, around 13 percent of the worldwide total, in 2023.
There are now 50 commercial 5G networks globally that adhere to 3GPP standards, with the number set to increase to 67 by the end of 2019, said the report, adding that the increasing availability of compatible devices and extended coverage will significantly boost 5G adoption in 2020.
Existing 4G-LTE technology gained a further 250 million connections worldwide in the third quarter of 2019 to reach the 5 billion milestones, after adding some 1 billion new connections over the course of the year. The report said LTE saw strong quarterly growth from the Americas region with the addition of 28 million connections, led by Latin America and the Caribbean with 17 million new LTE subscriptions thanks to increasing geographic coverage and lower-cost handsets.
5G Americas said forthcoming 5G spectrum auctions in Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador and Uruguay will serve to accelerate the deployment of LTE across the Latin American region by increasing the technology’s potential market.