Ericsson has predicted a 90 per cent mobile Internet penetration for Nigeria and other Sub-Saharan African countries in six years.
Ericsson also estimated that LTE would account for seven per cent of subscriptions in Sub-Saharan Africa by the end of this year, in its latest Mobility report.
According to the global company, the driving factors behind this shift include a young and growing population with increasing digital skills, as well as more affordable smartphones.
It predicted 5G subscriptions in significant volumes as from 2022 in Sub-Saharan Africa.
In the Middle East and North Africa, the company said it anticipated commercial 5G deployments with leading communications service providers by 2019, and significant volumes in 2021.
According to the report, 5G is expected to reach more than 40 per cent global population coverage and 1.5 billion subscriptions for enhanced mobile broadband by the end of 2024, making 5G the fastest generation of cellular technology to be rolled out on a global scale.
Commenting on the findings, the Executive Vice -President and Head of Business Area Networks, Fredrik Jejdling, said, “As 5G now hits the market, its coverage build-out and uptake in subscriptions are projected to be faster than for previous generations.
“At the same time, cellular IoT continues to grow strongly. What we are seeing is the start of fundamental changes that will impact not just the consumer market but many industries.”
Analysts at Ericsson forecasted that in Western Europe, 5G would account for some 30 per cent of mobile subscriptions in the region by end of 2024.
“The uptake of NB-IoT and Cat-M1 technologies is driving growth in the number of cellular IoT connections worldwide. Of the 4.1 billion cellular IoT connections forecast for 2024, North East Asia is expected to account for 2.7 billion – a figure reflecting both the ambition and size of the cellular IoT market in this region,” the report added.
“Diverse and evolving requirements across a wide range of use cases are prompting service providers to deploy both NB-IoT and Cat-M1 in their markets.”
The report identified other markets that were expecting significant 5G subscription volumes early as South Korea, Japan and China.
It added, “In Europe, some spectrum auctions have already been held, and others will take place over the next few years. The first commercial 5G subscriptions in the region are expected in 2019.
“On a global level, major 5G network deployments are anticipated from 2020, and by the end of 2024 we project 1.5 billion 5G subscriptions for enhanced mobile broadband. This will account for close to 17 per cent of all mobile subscriptions at that time.
“With global mobile data traffic forecast to increase more than five times between 2018 and 2024, key drivers for 5G deployment include increased network capacity and decreased cost per byte. 5G subscription uptake is expected to be faster than for LTE, which in turn is the mobile communication technology with the fastest subscription uptake so far.”