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5G's year one: fast start and healthy growth

by 5G Americas
BELLEVUE, Wash. Customers are making 5G the fastest growing generation of cellular wireless technology in terms of new subscriptions, according to 5G Americas, the wireless industry trade association and voice of 5G and LTE for the Americas. According to data based from Omdia, there are now over 17.7 million 5G connections globally as of Q4 2019, which represents 329% growth over Q3 2019 and is five million subscribers ahead of previous projections.

Chris Pearson, President, 5G Americas said, "We truly had a great year in 2019, as 5G adoption has surpassed most forecasts. With the first year of 5G completed, 2020 is shaping up to be focused on the growth of new 5G devices, increasing coverage, increasing network densification, and probably the first 5G Stand Alone deployments."

The rapid ascent of 5G compares favorably against the initial year for previous cellular communication technologies like LTE, which has now reached 5.3 billion connections after ten years of operation. While LTE became commercially available in the last quarter of 2009, it was used by only around 1,000 customers in Western Europe initially. In 2010, North America added 20,000 more LTE customers, bringing the total to 23,250 connections globally. It took roughly 10 quarters, or until Q1 2012, for 4G LTE to reach 17.9 million connections roughly where 5G is today. 3G did not reach that mark until December 2010, after 11 Quarters and 2G reached it in December 1995, after 14 quarters.

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5G Americas

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