What will be the real-term benefits of 5G or the fifth-generation mobile broadband technology and will it really be useful for consumers? A new report by Ericsson ConsumerLab argues that 5G won’t just be for businesses as it is being propagated, but will have real-term benefits for consumers.
In its “5G Consumer Potential,” Ericsson’s ConsumerLab says the argument that there will be no near-term consumer benefits from 5G is false. According to the report, users in markets like South Korea and Australia (the former has some of the fast mobile internet speeds in the world), as well as consumers in US are dissatisfied with mobile broadband speeds, which they say are not fast enough. Thus 5G could solve a real problem for many users with its higher speeds and low latency networks.
Ericsson’s survey showed that six in 10 users in mega/metro cities globally face issues in crowded areas and would like 5G to be deployed first in such areas in order to deal with the congestion. The survey also showed that consumers expect more home broadband choices, and more than half of those interested in 5G home wireless broadband are either dissatisfied with their existing provider or lack broadband choices.
Ericsson also claims the industry myth that consumers will be unwilling to pay a premium on 5G is untrue. According to the survey, user are willing to pay 20 per cent more for fifth-generation services, and half of the early adopters are willing to pay as much as 32 per cent more.
But the report also notes that four out of ten of these high spenders on 5G also expect new use cases and payment models as well as a secure 5G network, and not just high speeds from the new networks.
The report also argues that video consumption will rise with 5G with consumers not only streaming higher resolutions, but also looking at AR and VR video formats. The study claims the new video formats will result in an additional three hours of video content being watched weekly on mobile devices by users in the 5G future.
Further, the study also claims that one in five smartphone user’s data usage could reach more than 200GB per month on a 5G device by 2025. It adds that six out of ten such users will see having a 5G-connected home robots as a status symbol. Four out of the ten will expect access to 5G in the car and it will be considered as important as fuel efficiency and engine power in the next five years.
“Through our research, we have busted four myths about consumers’ views on 5G and answered questions such as whether 5G features will require new types of devices, or whether smartphones will be the silver bullet for 5G. Consumers clearly state that they think smartphones are unlikely to be the sole solution for 5G,” Jasmeet Singh Sethi, Head of ConsumerLab, Ericsson Research said in a press statement.
The new Ericsson ConsumerLab study is based on 35,000 interviews with smartphone users aged 15 to 69, carried out in 22 different countries. For the industry sentiment regarding the consumer value of 5G, Ericsson also conducted further 22 interviews with experts including academics as well as senior executives working for telecom operators, handset and chip manufacturers, start-ups and think tanks.
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