24 million 5G SIM connections to drive £2.88 billion revenue in UK by 2022

By Sarah Wray 31 January 2018

Sim only UK

The UK is set to have around 22 million 5G SIM connections and 2 million 5G SIM machine to machine (M2M) mobile connections by 2022, driving up to £2.8 billion in revenue. This is according to new analysis from Netscribes.

The Global 5G Markets (2020-2025) report forecasts that the worldwide 5G market will grow at an overall compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 97% and will be worth $251 billion (£177.3 billion) by 2025.

A spokesperson for Netscribes told 5G.co.uk: “In the UK, the revenue from 5G services is expected to increase. The UK is expected to have approximately 22 million 5G SIM connections and approximately 2 million 5G SIM M2M mobile connections by 2022. The revenue generated from 5G SIM mobile connections is expected to reach nearly $4 billion (£2.8 billion), while the revenue from SIM M2M mobile connections is expected to reach approximately $0.09 billion (0.06 billion)."

The spokeperson added: “Major drivers for the UK region would be the rising demand for a faster mobile broadband experience to support more connected devices.”

However, the company spokesperson noted that “declining average revenue per user (ARPU) has also been witnessed” in the UK. A 2017 report from Ofcom, based on operator data, found that the average revenue per user (ARPU) in 2015 was £16 per month, a 32% fall compared to 2005. At the same time, the data use per mobile SIM increased year on year by around two-thirds to 0.9 GB (1.3GB in 2016). Adoption of 5G could exacerbate this further. Recent research from Ericsson found that 26% of consumers envisage that 5G will be much faster than 4G and they also anticipate that it will offer better coverage. However, 13% also expect to get all this and see their plan price drop.

Socio-economic transformation

As well as “making way for a globally connected digital society”, 5G networks will also bring about “socio-economic transformation”, according to the analysis from Netscribes. The technology could increase productivity, sustainability and well-being, the research finds. 

5G is expected to address demand for advanced applications such as 4K/8K video streaming, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, remote healthcare, connected factories and more.

Getting there

Despite the promised benefits of 5G, adoption will not be immediate and mobile 4G LTE will dominate in terms of volume for at least the next ten years, Netscribes researchers say.

The report highlights that clear business regulations and well-defined standards will be essential to reaping the rewards of 5G. The analysis also outlines key challenges ahead, including inadequate spectrum and lack of infrastructure. These issues are particularly acute for developing countries, Netscribes finds.

The full report can be found here : The Global 5G Markets (2020-2025) 

Image credit: Shutterstock

About Sarah Wray

Technical Writer at 5G.co.uk

Sarah Wray is a technical writer with over 10 years' experience writing about technology, including telecoms, smart cities, data, IoT, aerospace, and more.

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