India to have 700 mn 5G subscribers by 2028-end: Ericsson

Nitin Bansal, head of Ericsson India
Nitin Bansal, head of Ericsson India


  • Ericsson expects smartphone subscriptions in the country to clock a CAGR of 5%, reaching over 1.14 billion by 2028

NEW DELHI : India is expected to have 700 million 5G subscribers by the end of calendar 2028, comprising 57% of its 1.2 billion mobile phone users, making it the fastest growing 5G market globally, Swedish telecom gear maker Ericsson said in a report.

With 5G user base set to expand, 4G subscriptions are forecasted to drop from 820 million in 2022 to 500 million by 2028, according to Ericsson Mobility Report 2023.

“Mobile networks continue to play a pivotal role in driving social and economic inclusion in the country.The strong digital infrastructure being established in India will help the country bridge the digital divide, create jobs, drive entrepreneurship and boost the economy," said Nitin Bansal, Head of Ericsson India and Head of Network Solutions for Southeast Asia, Oceania and India at Ericsson.

Ericsson expects smartphone subscriptions in the country to clock a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5%, reaching over 1.14 billion by 2028 from 840 million as of December-end 2022.

Smartphone subscriptions in India as a percentage of total mobile subscriptions are expected to grow from 76% in 2022 to 93% in 2028, it said.

The report projected average data traffic per smartphone to grow from 26 GB per month in 2022 to around 62 GB per month in 2028 – a CAGR of 16%. Total mobile data traffic is estimated to grow from 18 EB (Exabyte) per month in 2022 to 58 EB per month in 2028, clocking a CAGR of 22%.

5G subscriptions are rising in every region globally and forecast to reach 1.5 billion by 2023-end. Global mobile network data traffic continues to grow with monthly average usage per smartphone expected to exceed 20 GB by this year-end. In North America, 5G subscription growth has been stronger than expected in previous forecasts. At the end of 2022, the region had the highest 5G global subscription penetration at 41%.

Other top 5G markets also showed continued revenue growth. Global adoption of 5G has surpassed 1 billion subscriptions, boosting revenues for telecom operators. “We see a strong link between the increase in 5G subscriptions and service revenue. Over the past two years, the introduction of 5G services in the top 20 markets has resulted in a 7% revenue boost. This trend shows the growing value of 5G, benefiting users and service providers alike." said, Fredrik Jejdling, executive vice president and head of Networks, Ericsson.

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