5G device ecosystem catching up

Globally, there are 81 commercial 5G operators and 296 devices of which 112 are commercial as per GSA

By the end of May 2020, 386 operators in 97 countries/territories had announced they were investing in 5G but only 81 operators in 42 countries/territories had launched one or more 3GPP-compliant 5G services according to GSA.

73 operators in 38 countries/territories had launched 3GPP-compliant 5G mobile services (67 full launches, 6 limited availability launches); 39 operators in 24 countries/territories had launched 3GPP-compliant 5G FWA or home broadband services (33 full launches, 6 limited availability launches).

5G spectrum usage currently focused on a few key bands – Overlapping 5G Bands n77 and n78 are mostly used with 173 operators investing; 173 operators are investing in C-Band (specifically the overlapping bands n77 and n78) and of these 83 operators are identified as deploying networks in band n77 or n78; and 123 operators have been identified as investing at 24.25-29.5 GHz (Bands n257, n258 or n261).

In January 2020, the number of announced 5G devices exceeded 200 for the first time but by end-May 296 devices had been announced, of which 112 were commercially available as per GSA.

5G devices have 16 announced form factors and 84 vendors have announced or forthcoming 5G devices. These form factors are: phones, head-mounted displays, hotspots, indoor CPE, outdoor CPE, laptops/notebooks, modules, snap-on dongles/adapters, industrial grade CPE/routers/gateways, drones, robots, tablets, TVs, switch, modems and vending machine.

There are 296 announced devices (including regional variants, and phones that can be upgraded using a separate adapter, but excluding prototypes not expected to be commercialised and operator-branded devices that are essentially rebadged versions of other phones).

119 are phones of which at least 77 are commercially available which includes three phones that are upgraded to offer 5G using an adapter; eighty-four CPE devices (indoor, and outdoor, including two Verizon-spec compliant devices not meeting 3GPP 5G standards, and enterprise grade CPE/routers/gateways) of which 16 are believed to be commercially available; 47 modules; 20 hotspots (including regional variants) of which at least ten are commercially available; five laptops (notebooks); and 21 other devices (including drones, head mounted displays, robots, snap-on dongles/adapters, a switch, tablets, TVs, USB terminals/dongles/modems and vending machine).

With these devices being launched commercially and more to be launched in the coming months, the prices of 5G devices with different form factors will definitely become more affordable in days to come.

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