Tuesday, 17 November 2020 12:09

Telsyte sees demand for 5G smartphones increasing next year

Telsyte sees demand for 5G smartphones increasing next year Pixabay

The demand for 5G smartphones will increase next year with 39% of users indicating that their devices "must support 5G", with the figure going up to 58% for those who planned to upgrade, the telecommunications analyst firm Telsyte says.

The company said in a statement on Tuesday that there were less than 500,000 5G mobile services active at the end of June, adding that limited coverage and services from some carriers were to blame.

Nevertheless, Telsyte said this trend should reverse once more affordable mid-range 5G Android devices, like the Pixel 4a 5G and Samsung Galaxy A71 5G, became available. No mention was made of the numerous 5G models from Chinese brands like OPPO, vivo and Huawei.

Less than 15% of smartphones sold in the six months to June were 5G models, Telsyte said, adding that the iPhone 12 launch was expected to boost the penetration of 5G, a similar trend to that when Apple launched its first iPhone that supported 4G back in 2012.

"With the 5G mmWave spectrum auction scheduled for early 2021, Telsyte expects the gigabit 5G speed will become more widely available from late 2021/early 2022 following the conclusion of the auction and unleashing the true potential for 5G," Telsyte.

The company also commented on the trend of mobile carriers using 5G to offer fixed wireless connections, saying that more providers would start offering such services.

The company's senior analyst, Alvin Lee, said: "Service providers might consider 5G fixed wireless services if they can generate a better margin than selling similar fixed lined services"

Telsyte found that about 10% of households were mobile only at the end of June 2020, down from the peak at 18% in 2016, with the change due to higher uptake of the NBN in recent years.

It said the potential uptake of 5G fixed wireless services could reach 20% to 30%of Australian households in the medium term if networks could deliver reliable gigabit or faster speeds at attractive price points.

With eSIMs limited to major carriers, they were unable to play a role in enabling mobile connectivity in secondary devices such as wearables, including popular smartwatches.

Telsyte said more than 25% of Australians already owned a smart wearable device, but support for mobile connected wearables was limited if consumers were with an MVNO.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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