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Network evolution

Network evolution

Your guide to navigating in the new global mobile landscape towards 2030

Building networks for the digital future

By 2030, limitless connectivity will be anywhere—and the global mobile network will be the critical infrastructure of the digital society. Are you ready?

By 2030, we foresee large parts of the legacy IT network infrastructure will be replaced with a new, trusted mobile digital infrastructure; the backbone of the digital society and industry 4.0.

The network's capabilities will extend far beyond what we see today in terms of design, distribution, operation, management, and security.

Most importantly, the future global mobile network will play a supporting role in addressing the sustainability challenges our world faces—by accelerating climate action.

"Our vision is a world where limitless connectivity improves lives, redefines business and pioneers a sustainable future."

How to secure long-term relevance and revenue?

Around the world, new ecosystems of successful global and local businesses will emerge from the capabilities of the new mobile digital infrastructure. And you have a strategic role to play in the evolution of future networks.

As a service provider, realizing and monetizing the arising opportunities will be dependent on three actions:

  1. Identify business opportunities, define and claim your role.
  2. Establish strategic collaborations while securing core business value.
  3. Learn and scale from current relationships in digital ecosystems.

The first step towards the digital future starts now

The decisions you make today will impact your long-term results. With us as a partner, you are guaranteed accurate guidance—no matter the strategy you choose. Today, and all the days ahead.

We help you:

Grow with incremental investments and low risk

Our modular and scalable network solutions empower us to optimize your network with precision. This will ensure you address any short-term concerns effectively—while establishing a robust future-ready foundation.

Expand into new business areas with confidence

Together—with you and partners—we explore the emerging opportunities. This assures you deliver on evolving needs of consumers, enterprises, and your business.

Secure your long-term network evolution

Our technology leadership ensures that you can navigating increasing network complexity and add the right capabilities when and wherever they are needed. Today and tomorrow.

Our strategy to evolve the mobile network for a digital future

Rather than attempting to present a rigid roadmap for the long-term network evolution (that will invariably become obsolete), we prefer to break down the complex journey into three different—but parallel—time horizons: Foundation, Exploration, and Research. As each horizon contains its own discussions and considerations, this philosophy allows us effectively address short- and long-term trends while steadily guiding us towards our vision.

Our strategy to evolve the mobile network for a digital future


This time horizon is the shortest of the three and is tied to our current offering. Here we secure that your short-term concerns become the basis for a robust, future-proof network, and long-term business growth.

Build a future-ready foundation


The white horizon deals with issues on a slightly longer timescale. Here we explore the emerging possibilities to support the long-term network evolution—giving us, you, and our entire industry a clear and consistent approach for technologies, operations, businesses, and ecosystems.

Explore tomorrow’s requirements


This horizon covers the long-term direction for the future mobile network. Through internal and collaborative research with industry and academia, we can prepare for future use cases and develop the technologies needed to deliver on their requirements.

See our research for the future

The decisions of today are the foundation of tomorrow

Even if it is vital to see what the future holds, focusing on what matters now is just as important. The first step towards the mobile digital infrastructure is to establish a solid base from which the network can evolve; a foundation that amplifies your existing strategies, supports your short-term goals, and enables future business growth.

We have identified three key areas, those we believe will have the greatest impact on your short-term concerns—while generating value in the long run.

The decisions of today are the foundation of tomorrow

How to establish a future-ready network:

Modernize with cost-effectiveness

Make a smooth and cost-efficient transition into 5G while making use of pre-existing investments. This includes optimization of current spectrum assets, lowering cost per bit, and breaking the energy curve.

Expand into new business opportunities

Expand your 5G network and business in tandem and get coverage and capacity in the right places to support growth. Act now to establish a foothold in new business areas—and acquire the capabilities to monetize them.

Manage increasing complexity

New types of business mean new services and new levels of complexity. Managing the rapid evolution, with multiple network generations deployed, is crucial.

Let's take action today to build the future

Exploration to secure the evolution and expansion of telecom

Although the future offers immense opportunities for innovation, we need to explore the fundamentals that will take existing networks to that level. The exploration horizon deals with issues from a slightly longer perspective than today's offering; the emerging technological, operational, business, and ecosystem-related possibilities—beyond the hype.

Exploring possible avenues to set the direction

Our primary purpose is to provide the right building blocks for taking the next step towards a mobile digital infrastructure. We have identified five key areas where the entire industry needs to develop a clear and common approach.

Exploration to secure the evolution and expansion of telecom

What we explore:

Edge computing in networks

As enterprises digitize with 5G, you need to decide which role to adopt in the edge ecosystem. And you need to establish a strong foothold and a thought-out strategy on how to partner with cloud players. Delivering SLA-based network and computing services at scale will be key to capturing the emerging low-latency market.

Explore large-scale computation at the network edge

AI in networks and operations

A broadened use of AI will be a strict necessity for managing future networks. Not only to handle the complexity and increase the speed and agility of operations and service delivery, but also to enable new business models for advanced use cases.

Explore the next level of automation

Openness and innovation

To broaden your role in enterprise digitalization, supporting network-based innovation is critical; the upcoming network-enabled applications, services, and devices will be completely dependent on a standardized and open platform.

Explore innovations on top of the network

Resilient 5G systems

To become the trusted mobile digital infrastructure of the future, enterprises and governments must feel confident in relying on the network for critical applications. Building trust is key to securing a common network evolution.

Explore how to advance technologies for trust

Breaking the energy curve

Although network digitalization brings accelerated traffic growth, this must not be accompanied by escalating costs or carbon footprint. Instead, a mobile digital infrastructure will be the foundation for cost-efficiency and the most powerful tool for companies and societies to achieve sustainability goals.

Explore technology that speeds up climate action

Research providing the technical direction for future networks

This time horizon provides the long-term direction for our technology and everything its networks need to deliver, throughout and beyond the journey towards a digital society.

Research for the future

Already today, we are looking into what key requirements will enable networks to fully transform into a recognized, secure, and energy-efficient backbone of the digital society. We drive this research internally and in collaboration with industry and academia to guide, inspire and curate a long-term and joint technological development.

Research providing the technical direction for future networks

What we research:

Limitless connectivity

Limitless connectivity is our vision for 2030, where mobile networks will deliver unlimited performance for all applications—allowing anyone to connect anywhere at any time. This vision is dependent on expanding the coverage, performance, and efficiency of networks.

See our research within extreme wireless

Trustworthy systems

On the journey towards transforming mobile networks for future requirements, the trustworthiness in networks must elevate to serve as the backbone of a highly advanced digital society.

See our research within trustworthy systems

Network compute fabric

To support the advanced future use cases, the lines between the device, the network edge, and the cloud need to dissolve. That requires a compute fabric built on a common theme; a unification of telecom and IT allowing networks and clouds to become one single, centralized execution environment for distributed applications.

See our research within network compute fabric

Cognitive network

The expected network transformation also stipulates a need to raise the level of network intelligence. The key to create automated network operations will be to enable rapid introduction of a broad range of requirements—without escalating costs and complexity.

See our research within cognitive networks

Get all the details

Read our evolution story and gain deep knowledge of the future digital infrastructure, its opportunities and how to realize that.

Download the report

Why you should choose us as a partner

Because we invented the technology that first connected people and will soon connect everything. But our role as an orchestrator of evolving network technologies also means more—from establishing the open standards that enable our industry creating new innovative solutions, to driving global partnerships that scale the positive impact of technology.

years of innovation
57000 +
granted patents
countries with customers

Ericsson named a Leader in the 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for 5G Network Infrastructure for CSPs report

The Gartner report from February 2023 has recognized Ericsson in the Leaders quadrant and positioned highest for "Ability to Execute". Ericsson is positioned as a Leader for the third year in a row.

Read the report
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