The latest report from Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson says that 5G networks will achieve a significant milestone before the end of 2022.
The company said in its report that the number of 5G subscribers will reach one billion by the end of this year.
Although this number is still much lower than the number of subscribers to 4G networks, which reached about 5 billion subscribers during 2022, Ericsson expects that the number of 4G subscribers will reach its peak at the end of the year, to begin the escalation of subscription to the fifth generation to replace the fourth generation, as happened previously between third and fourth-generation networks.
In North America, where carriers have touted 5G for the past three years, nearly 35 percent of mobile subscribers will be 5G users by the end of 2022.
While mid-range 5G networks, which provide faster speeds than 4G networks, now cover about 80 percent of the US population, Ericsson believes that telecom companies are charging higher fees to get those high speeds.
Ericsson’s talk of high prices for 5G services refers primarily to Western European countries, where it is common to see wireless plans tiered according to speed. But it’s not an isolated practice, as the company says that around 25 percent of carriers providing 5G services globally charge more for 5G speeds than for 4G speeds, with an average premium of 40 percent.
Ericsson believes that the trend of using speed to entice customers to upgrade to 5G continues.
“This pricing strategy is gaining momentum, and now 24 percent of those providing 5G offerings are using it to segment the market and incentivize consumers to move to the higher-priced tiers,” the company said.