More Than 1 Billion People Expected to Be Using 5G by Year’s End

More than 1 billion people will be connected to 5G by the end of 2022, according to the latest mobility report from Ericsson.

Between July and September of this year, 5G added 110 million subscribers around the world, upping the total count to 870 million, said the report, released Wednesday. That’s almost double the number of 5G subscribers there were by the end of 2021, which the Swedish telecommunications equipment maker estimated to be 580 million

If 5G users hit the 1 billion this year, that means fifth-generation networks will have hit the nine-figure subscriber mark two years faster than 4G did, said Ericsson, confirming that 5G is so far the “fastest-scaling mobile connectivity generation.”

“Communications Service providers continue to deploy 5G and the momentum for Fixed Wireless Access is accelerating,” Fredrik Jejdling, head of networks at Ericsson, said in a statement. “Global mobile network data traffic is practically doubling every two years.” 

4G subscriptions are still growing as well, with 41 million subscribers added between July and September. It’s anticipated they will peak at 5.2 billion by the end of the year, and mobile subscriptions overall are forecast to exceed 8.4 billion.

By 2028, 5G is expected to reach 5 billion subscriptions globally and make up 55% of all network subscriptions, according to the report. Overall mobile subscriptions in 2028 are expected to be more than 9.2 billion.

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