Updated: Aug 16
One-third of the world's population will likely be covered by 5G Networks by 2025. There will be a significant Influence on the mobile sector and its clients.
More than just a new technology generation, 5G heralds a new era in which connection will advance in fluidity and flexibility. Applications will adapt to 5G Networks, and performance will match user requirements.
According to GSMA:
"5G will account for as many as 1.2 billion connections by 2025"
The global deployment of 5G Networks is progressing rapidly. As of July 2023, there are 85 countries with commercial 5G services, and over 1 billion 5G devices have been shipped.
The top 5 countries with the most 5G Networks are:
Other countries with significant 5G deployments include Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Australia, India, and Brazil.
The 5G ecosystem is also growing rapidly. There are now over 2,000 5G-enabled smartphones on the market, and the number of 5G-enabled devices is expected to reach 1.5 billion by 2025.
The growth of 5G is driven by several factors, including the increasing demand for high-speed mobile data, the growing popularity of 5G-enabled devices, and the investments made by network operators.
5G is expected to significantly impact how we live and work. It will enable new applications and services in various sectors, including healthcare, education, manufacturing, and transportation.
Here are some of the key benefits of 5G:
Ultra-fast speeds: 5G can deliver speeds of up to 10 Gbps, which is 100 times faster than 4G. This will enable new applications and services requiring high-speed data, such as virtual, augmented, and cloud gaming.
Low latency: 5G has very low latency, meaning data can be transmitted and received quickly. This will be essential for real-time communication applications like self-driving cars and remote surgery.
Massive capacity: 5G can support a much larger number of devices than 4G. This will be important for applications that require many connected devices, such as smart cities and the Internet of Things.
The global deployment of 5G is still in its early stages but progressing rapidly. 5G is expected to have a major impact on how we live and work, and it will likely become the dominant mobile technology in the coming years.
5G Standalone (SA) and 5G Non-Standalone (NSA)
Source: IEEE ComSoc
5G Standalone (SA) and 5G Non-Standalone (NSA) are different deployment options for 5G Networks.
5G Standalone (SA): SA refers to a fully independent 5G Network architecture that doesn't rely on previous cellular technology. It operates solely on the 5G infrastructure, including the core network, radio access network (RAN), and user devices. In SA, the core network is built specifically for 5G, which enables the full potential of the technology and its advanced features, such as network slicing, ultra-low latency, and massive machine-type communication. SA networks offer improved performance and greater flexibility compared to NSA networks.
5G Non-Standalone (NSA): NSA is an early deployment option that allows 5G to be introduced while leveraging existing 4G infrastructure. In NSA, the 5G radio access network (RAN) is added as an extension to the existing 4G core network. The core network remains 4G-based, and the 5G RAN provides additional capacity and speed enhancements. NSA enables faster rollout of 5G services since it leverages the existing infrastructure but doesn't fully exploit the capabilities of 5G.
It's important to note that both SA and NSA deployments exist to cater to different scenarios and transition periods. NSA deployments allow for a faster introduction of 5G services, especially in areas where 5G coverage is limited. On the other hand, SA deployments are considered the ultimate goal for 5G networks, providing the full potential and capabilities of the technology.
Over time, as 5G Networks mature and expand, the industry is moving toward a greater emphasis on SA deployments to unlock the full benefits of 5G technology.
5G Standalone (SA)
5G Non-Standalone (NSA)
New 5G packet core network
Existing 4G LTE core network
5G RAN connects directly to the 5G core network
5G RAN connects to the 4G core network for control signalling
Higher performance and lower latency
Lower performance and higher latency
Not yet widely available
More widely available
Core network: The core network is the central part of a cellular network, responsible for routing traffic and providing services such as voice, data, and messaging. In 5G SA, the core network is entirely new and dedicated to 5G. This allows for higher performance and lower latency. In 5G NSA, the core network is the same as the 4G LTE core network. This means 5G NSA networks can only offer the same performance as 4G LTE networks.
Control signalling: Control signalling is the data used to manage the network, such as routing traffic and setting up connections. In 5G SA, the 5G RAN connects directly to the 5G core network for control signalling. This allows for faster and more efficient control signalling. In 5G NSA, the 5G RAN connects to the 4G core network for control signalling. This means that control signalling must be routed through the 4G core network, which can add latency.
Performance: 5G SA networks perform better than 5G NSA networks, as 5G SA networks have a dedicated core network and faster control signalling. 5G SA networks can also offer lower latency than 5G NSA networks.
Availability: 5G SA networks are not yet widely available. This is because they require new core network equipment. 5G NSA networks are more widely available, as they can be deployed on existing 4G LTE infrastructure.
Overall, 5G SA is the more advanced and future-proof technology. However, 5G NSA is more widely available and can offer some of the benefits of 5G.
Detailed 5G NR Band Country List*
n1, n3, n40, n78, n8
n1, n28, n78
n66, n71, n41, n78, n71
n28, n41, n79
n1, n78, n8
n28, n78, FWA
n3, n28, n78
n1, n28, n78
n3, n28, n78
n1, n28, n78
n1, n28, n78, FWA
n3, n7, n78
n28, n78, n257, n77
n78, n79, n257
n78, n257, n77
n1, n28, n78, FWA
n1, n28, n78, n7, n3
n1, n8, n78
n2, n5, n66, n77
n25, n41, n71, n77
n2, n5, n77
* List updated July 2023
Do you want to know more about how SmartViser can help you with your 5G deployments?
Susie Siouti is the Chief Commercial Officer for SmartViser, helping organisations in the Telecommunications industry offer superior end-user quality of experience and service by introducing innovative test automation products. Susie has 20 years of experience in the Telecoms industry and, in that time, has led teams across the world, mainly in Testing and Compliance. Holding an MBA from Henley Business School brings diverse skills and expertise, including business acumen, strategic thinking, financial management, sales and marketing expertise, leadership, and innovation.
Susie joined SmartViser in 2016 and is part of the internal steering committee responsible for developing and implementing the company's commercial strategy and encouraging a customer-centric culture. The main mission is to help organizations to create value by offering better quality products and services by improving operational efficiency and innovation.