Arthur D. Little (ADL) has released its 5G Country Leadership Index where it has benchmarked over 40 countries. South Korea is the clear leader followed by the United States and Australia. France and Germany are more distant 5G followers, while Italy and UK are slightly behind the leading countries. In Asia, South Korea, Qatar and United Arab Emirates have taken lead; In Europe it is Switzerland, Finland and Spain whereas in Australia it is Australia.
Regionally South East Asia is most advanced, with South Korea using Winter Olympics as an opportunity to showcase its leadership. The US is among the first to launch commercial 5G services. Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are also ahead, while Europe overall lags due to heterogeneous infrastructure and fragmentation, as well as outstanding/ongoing spectrum allocation processes in many countries.
In South Korea there has been some delay in commercial rollout of 5G services as availability of good quality 5G smartphones by Samsung and LG was not available till February but it is expected that the commercial rollout will definitely start in the first half of 2019 say April or May 2019.
In America, operators like AT&T, Verizon and Sprint have plans to deploy 5G in 2019. AT&T is moving forward in bringing 5G+ to 21 cities. The network is live in Atlanta, Charlotte, Dallas, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Louisville, New Orleans, Oklahoma City, Raleigh, San Antonio and Waco. In 2019, cities to be added by AT&T are: Chicago, Minneapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Nashville, Orlando, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose.
Sprint is executing its 5G strategy in the US with 2.5 GHz spectrum and Massive MIMO technology to launch its blazing-fast service beginning in nine top cities – Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New York City, Phoenix and Washington, D.C. in the first half of 2019.
Verizon Communications is launching its 5G ultra wideband network in more than 30 US cities in 2019. Verizon 5G Mobility will launch in the first half of 2019, and Verizon 5G Home will expand coverage to more markets in the second half of 2019. Revenues from 5G Mobility and 5G Home will begin to scale in 2020 and are expected to contribute more meaningfully to its growth in 2021.
Karim Taga, Managing Partner and Global Practice Leader TIME, Arthur D. Little said, “While South Korea is currently the clear leader, many others are also moving beyond trials to launch 5G networks. We expect adoption to accelerate in Q3/Q4 2019 following the launch of 5G devices at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. During 2019, we foresee that dozens of operators will launch 5G services commercially, eventually improving their countries’ ranking. The race is on!”
5G Country Leadership Index talks about five potential deployment models – Gigabit broadband to the home (Verizon and NTT docomo) Next-Gen mobile user experience (T-Mobile, Vodafone, SK Telecom, LG U+, Sprint and Orange), Future corporate networks (Vodafone, A&T and Swisscom), Digital industrial eco-systems (KT, BT, T-Mobile, Ooredoo and TIM) and NextGen Infra-as-a-service.
The 5G Country Leadership Index is based on detailed analysis of technical infrastructure and tendency for 5G commercialization. Leaders have 5G spectrum allocated, high performance backhaul infrastructure deployed, have announced ambitious goals for 5G launch or launched already, and have successfully trialled multiple use-cases. Additionally, they demonstrate a willingness to adopt new services and have the right level of competition to foster commercialization.