Ericsson Mobility Report: COVID-19 impact shows networks’ crucial role in society

  • Globally, 190 million 5G subscriptions forecast by end of 2020; 2.8 billion by the end of 2025; and 270 million in South East Asia and Oceania by the end of 2025
  • Digital infrastructure critical to meeting communication needs in times of crisis
  • 5G to enable up to USD 41 billion revenue opportunity for service providers in South East Asia by 2030
Ericsson Mobility Report: COVID-19 impact shows networks’ crucial role in society

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) expects the global number of 5G subscriptions to top 190 million by the end of 2020 and 2.8 billion by the end of 2025. In South East Asia and Oceania, 5G will account for 21 percent of mobile subscriptions by 2025. These forecasts are included in the June 2020 edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report, along with projections for data traffic growth, and regional subscriptions.

The report also takes an incisive look at the role of networks and digital infrastructure in keeping societies running, and families connected during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jerry Soper, Country Head of Ericsson Indonesia says: “People all over the world have had to change their daily lives as a result of the spread of COVID-19. The move to working or studying from home has seen network traffic rapidly shift from business to residential areas, demonstrating the critical importance of connectivity.”

While 5G subscription growth in some markets has slowed as a result of the pandemic, this is outweighed by other markets where it is accelerating, prompting Ericsson to raise its year-end 2020 forecast for global 5G subscriptions.

“Beyond measuring the success of 5G in subscriptions, its impact will be judged by the benefits it brings to industries as well as consumers in the country,” Jerry adds. 5G is a platform made for innovation as it will completely redefine the way people interact, societies function, and businesses perform.

Value of digital infrastructure

Changes in behavior due to lockdown restrictions have caused measurable changes in the usage of both fixed and mobile networks. The largest share of the traffic increase has been absorbed by fixed residential networks, which has experienced a 20-100 percent growth. But many service providers also noticed a spike in demand on their mobile network.

In a recent study conducted by Ericsson Consumer Lab, 83 percent of the respondents from 11 countries claim that ICT helped them a lot to cope with the lockdown. The results show an increased adoption and usage of ICT services, such as e-learning and wellness apps, that have helped consumers adapt to new realities, underpinned by connectivity.

Looking ahead, while 57 percent say they will save money for financial security, one-third plan to invest in 5G and an improved broadband at home to be better prepared for a potential second wave of COVID-19.

5G Business Potential

The current COVID-19 pandemic has also highlighted the importance of digitalization for businesses worldwide. Connectivity has enabled companies to continue engaging with customers as well as conduct business transactions online. Additionally, the combination of 5G and digitalization creates new opportunities for service providers to extend their businesses beyond connectivity into a variety of sectors ranging from healthcare, automotive to manufacturing.

Magnus Ewerbring, Chief Technology Officer for Asia-Pacific, says, “Ericsson is committed to providing leading technology solutions to empower users. 5G network offer higher speeds, ultra-low latency, and ubiquitous coverage which allow users to have a fast and seamless experience they have never had before.

In the initial phase of 5G deployment, it will be a network capacity, speed and quality enhancer in metropolitan areas with enhanced mobile broadband as a way for operators to address huge traffic growth. Over time, new, exciting innovation in 5G for business will come with IoT use cases as 5G opens up opportunities for operators. Further, we believe that 5G security provides a level of trustworthiness that enables the 5G system to meet the requirements of the vast majority of use cases”

In South East Asia, the projected value of the 5G-enabled digitalization revenues for service providers will be approximately USD 41 billion by 2030.

Download the June 2020 edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report

The report also includes forecasts on data traffic growth, regional subscriptions plus insights into cloud-based gaming as well as in-depth articles on private dedicated networks and Verizon’s millimeter wave strategy for targeted metropolitan areas.

Ericsson now has more than 93 commercial 5G agreements or contracts with unique communication service providers, of which 40 are live networks.


Connectivity in a COVID-19 world (Ericsson ConsumerLab study)

How networks are adapting to the new normal (Ericsson Blog post)

Find out more about Ericsson’s other publicly announced 5G contracts.

Find out more about Ericsson 5G.

Find out more about Ericsson’s 4G and 5G Fixed Wireless Access.



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Ericsson Newsroom

Ignes Messyta, Head of Communications, Ericsson Indonesia



About Ericsson
Ericsson enables communications service providers to capture the full value of connectivity. The company’s portfolio spans Networks, Digital Services, Managed Services, and Emerging Business and is designed to help our customers go digital, increase efficiency and find new revenue streams. Ericsson’s investments in innovation have delivered the benefits of telephony and mobile broadband to billions of people around the world. The Ericsson stock is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and on Nasdaq New York.