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5G to defy recession over the next 12 months

Study predicts that operator‑billed 5G service revenue will escape the effects of inclement economic conditions and grow by 60% year on year at the end of 2023 from the $195bn expected in 2022

A study from Juniper Research has forecast that more than 600 million new 5G subscriptions will be created globally over the next year.

The positive economic benefit from this growth is a value to operators of 5G-related services of $315bn by the end of 2023, representing a growth rate of 60% despite the many economic headwinds at play, says the report 5G monetisation: business models, strategic recommendations & market forecasts 2022-2027.

Juniper said the 5G industry would be driven by the accelerating migration of cellular subscriptions to 5G networks owing to operator strategies that minimise or remove any premium over existing 4G subscription offerings.

The report also predicted that the ability of standalone 5G networks to offer network slicing will act as the ideal platform for the growth of 5G private network revenue. It cited the fact that the intrinsic ability of standalone 5G next‑generation core networks to support network slicing technology can be used to take a slice of public 5G infrastructure and provide it to private network users.

In turn, this would help mitigate the cost of private 5G network hardware and increase its overall value proposition, all against a background of deteriorating macro-economic conditions, said Juniper.

Yet despite the growth of use cases such as the internet of things (IoT), Juniper expects revenue from consumer connections to continue to be the cornerstone of the 5G operator revenue increase. “Over 95% of global 5G connections in 2027 will be connected personal devices such as smartphones, tablets and mobile broadband routers,” said research co-author Olivia Williams.

Looking to the long term, the report saw the growth of 5G networks remaining steady over the research period, with over 80% of global operator‑billed revenue attributable to 5G connections by 2027.

The Juniper study comes just days after Ericsson ConsumerLab published its 5G: The next wave report, a key finding of which was that despite the past two years seeing the accelerated growth of 5G mobile networks and consumer intentions to upgrade to 5G in the next 12 months increasing, people are questioning why 5G coverage isn’t up to scratch – a possible gating factor to growth.

It added that perceived 5G availability was emerging as the new satisfaction benchmark among consumers. Geographical coverage, indoor and outdoor coverage, and congregation hot-spot coverage are more important to building user perception than population coverage.

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