5G subscription by 2022, 78% to use 4G by 2023 in India: Ericsson

5G subscription by 2022, 78% to use 4G by 2023 in India: Ericsson

A 5G sign is seen during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain February 28, 2018. REUTERS

Indian mobile users can expect to access 5G services by 2022 while 4G connections are estimated to soar around four-folds in the country , according to a report released by Ericsson Mobility on Tuesday.

"We expect 5G smartphone subscriptions to become available by 2022. And by the end of 2023, there will be some 10 million subscriptions on 5G in India," Ericsson Mobility Report (EMR) Editor Patrik Cerwall told PTI while sharing details.

According to the report, the first commercial rollout of 5G is expected by the end of this year globally.

"The big markets where a lot of subscriptions will be taken up will be North America, China, Japan, and South Korea. When it comes to 5G in North America, just to give you a perspective, we believe that 48% of all subscriptions in North America will be on 5G by 2023," Cerwall said.

The report said that India is considering the range 24.5GHz to 29.5GHz for commercial 5G networks, as well as the bands 37GHz, 39GHz and 42GHz.

In late 2016 and early 2017, India saw strong growth in the number of 4G subscriptions, mainly due to attractive free voice and data traffic offers.

"As a result, LTE (4G) accounted for 20% of all mobile subscriptions at the end of 2017. The transformation toward more advanced technologies is expected to continue in India and, in 2023, LTE is forecast to represent 78% of all mobile subscriptions," the report said.

The report forecasts that India will have 780 million VoLTE (voice over LTE) subscriptions by 2023.

EMR predicted that there will be 5.5 billion 4G subscription by the end of 2023 globally.

In terms of global mobile subscriber growth, India occupied second spot with net subscriber addition of over 16 million with total base of 1,185 million in the first quarter of 2018. China led the global subscriber growth with net additions of 53 million taking total number of customer base to 1,470 million.

EMR expects smartphones subscription in India to reach 970 million by 2023 from 380 million at the end of 2017 and most of the devices will be based on 4G technology.

Cerwall said that 5G smartphones will start coming in the market in the first half of 2019 and the largest variants of smartphone devices will probably come around 2019 end and lot of device variants will come in 2020.

 The report, based on data from 180 countries, estimates that there will be 3.5 billion IoT (internet of things) cellular connection by 2023 of which 72 million are estimated in India.

Based on the adoption of 4G technology , EMR estimates that the total monthly mobile data traffic in India is expected to have increased by five times to reach 10 EB (exabyte) from 1.9 EB (close to 2 billion gigabyte or GB) at the end of 2017.