5G smartphones likely to emerge in 2019: report

SEOUL (The Korea Herald/ANN) - Starting from 2019, consumers can expect to use their smartphones running on 5G network.

Smartphones that run on the fifth-generation network are predicted to emerge starting from 2019, while current 4G network smartphones are likely to remain mainstream until 2022, according to market researcher Strategy Analytics on Sunday.

“We predict 5G enabled smartphones will emerge from 2019, but it will start to ramp up volumes from 2021 onwards,” said Yiwen Wu, an analyst at Strategy Analytics, in a report, adding “4G has replaced 3G as the world’s dominating smartphone air-interface in 2015, the trend will maintain by 2022.”

The report, meanwhile, said 2G smartphones will quickly be phased out as chipset makers and device manufacturers shift to the wireless and Long Term Evolution tracks.

Boris Metodiev, another researcher at the institute, forecast that global LTE handset sales would grow 30 percent between 2018 and 2022.

Among 88 countries he studied, China, the United States and India will be the world’s largest 4G markets, while South Korea and Japan will be the most advanced, Metodiev said.

“While the 5G network services are expected to be commercialized by 2019 at the earliest, the current 4G infrastructure will continue providing major services for users,” said a communications industry official based in Seoul.

Korean mobile carriers are working to launch the country’s first 5G mobile services. KT aims to demonstrate its services at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics. SK Telecom has opened a bid to purchase 5G network equipment from global vendors, a major step to start establishing a 5G network.


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