Bengaluru: Mobile handsets with 5G are likely to overtake 4G enabled phones in the next five years. According to a Canalys forecast, 800 million 5G handsets will ship in by 2023, accounting for 51.4% of total smartphone shipments. By the end of 2023, a total of 1.9 5G billion smartphones would have been shipped worldwide.
Greater China will ship 34% of total 5G smartphones, while North America and Asia Pacific will account for 18.8% and 17.4% of shipments, respectively.
Government initiatives will be the key driver for faster roll-out of 5G services in China and the US. In China, 5G licenses were granted a year before it was planned. “The role of the Chinese government and the well-orchestrated joint investments of operators and equipment suppliers were critical to this earlier commercial launch,” said Nicole Peng, Vice President of Mobility at Canalys.
China is also home to major 5G equipment suppliers and smartphone vendors, which will lead to an aggressive marketing push over the next few years, Peng said.
Further, 17.5% of smartphones shipped in China will be 5G ready by 2020, which is expected to grow to 62.7% in 2023.
However, the availability of 5G smartphones alone will not guarantee faster speeds. It will require a successful deployment of 5G services as well. Peng rues that full 5G deployment will take much longer, and will be more complex than the roll-out of 4G services. It will put more pressure on telecom operators who are already struggling.
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