Last week we saw several important developments on 5G networks and services. The UK government is targeting 5G standalone (SA) coverage in all populated areas of the country by 2030, while Rogers is acquiring BAI Canada to roll out a 5G network across Toronto’s subway. Meanwhile, from a services perspective, Major League Baseball struck a deal with T-Mobile US to use its 5G SA private network to review strike zone balls and strikes, while China is planning to develop 5G services at tourist hotspots in the country by 2025.
These developments reiterate three important points. First, 5G is a central component of most government initiatives aiming to push digital connectivity and services. Second, momentum for 5G SA rollouts is accelerating after a slow start, as highlighted by GSMA Intelligence insights. Third, deploying new services that leverage 5G technologies is key to helping the industry monetise 5G investments; according to GSMA Intelligence, mobile operator capex will reach $1.5 trillion globally between 2023 and 2030, with the vast majority on next-generation networks (5G, 5G-Advanced and the start of investment in early 6G launches).