Forecast: 5G smartphone shipments to overtake 4G in 2023

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Market analyst Canalys forecasts that 5G-enabled smartphone shipments will reach nearly 800 million units in 2023, accounting for 51.4 per cent of all smartphone shipments, passing 4G smartphones five years after commercial launch.

The CAGR between 2019 and 2023 will be 179.9 per cent, while vendors will ship nearly 1.9 billion devices to market market by the end of 2023.

Greater China will account for 34 per cent of 5G smartphone shipments, followed by North America at 18.8 per cent and Asia-Pacific at 17.4 per cent.

As early as 2020 5G devices are estimated to account for 17.5 per cent of the total volume in China – rising to 62.7 percent in 2023.

Canalys VP of mobility, Nicole Peng, said: “5G smartphones will see rapid adoption in China thanks to a strong government technology roadmap and operators’ financial capabilities. China is also home to many major 5G equipment suppliers and smartphone vendors, which will be responsible for an aggressive marketing push over the next few years.”

“But mass-market adoption of 5G smartphones does not necessarily mean a successful 5G deployment,” Peng warned. “Full 5G deployment will take much longer, and be much more complex than the previous network generation, in order to realise the benefits of 5G beyond eMBB (enhanced Mobile Broadband).”


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