By the end of July 2020, some 392 Telecommunication companies (Telcos) in 126 countries/territories have announced they were investing in 5G, according to the latest report from GSA, the Global mobile Suppliers Association.
To date, there are now 92 commercial 5G networks available for consumers in 38 countries including in Thailand, Australia and India.
Other statistics from GSA:
- 115 operators had announced they had deployed 3GPP compliant technology in their live networks.
- Of those, a total of 92 operators in 38 countries/territories had launched one or more 3GPP-compliant 5G services.
- 84 operators had launched 3GPP compliant 5G mobile services
- 37 operators had launched 3GPP compliant 5G FWA or home broadband services
- 9 operators had announced limited availability or soft launches no longer counted in the above launch figures
Last week, selected StarHub customers in Singapore have started enjoying 5G service in some areas of the island. Available as an early trial access, the service will be offered free and turned on automatically for customers.
In Malaysia, the Communication Minister awarded multiple 5G license for the 700Mhz band in May 2020 but later cancelled the award in early June 2020 after an article published by MalaysianWireless. Since then, not much progress have been made as the Government said it still studying and deciding on the implementation of 5G technology in the country. The new Government have also not made it clear on how it will deal with the other 5G frequencies in the country, such as 3.5GHz, 26GHz and 28GHz.
Globally, when it comes to 5G devices, by the end-July 2020, GSA had identified:
- 18 announced form factors (phones, head-mounted displays, hotspots, indoor CPE, outdoor CPE, laptops/notebooks, modules, snap-on dongles/adapters, industrial grade CPE/routers/gateways/modems, drones, robots, tablets, TVs, cameras, USB modems, a switch, a vehicle OBU and a vending machine).
- 91 vendors who had announced available or forthcoming 5G devices.
- 364 announced devices (including regional variants, and phones that can be upgraded using a separate adapter, but excluding operator-branded devices that are essentially re-badged versions of other phones), including 162 that are understood to be commercially available:
- 162 phones, at least 113 of which are now commercially available (up 18 in a month). Includes three phones that are upgraded to offer 5G using an adapter.
- 94 CPE devices (indoor and outdoor, including two US-Verizon-spec compliant devices not meeting 3GPP 5G standards, and enterprise grade CPE/routers/gateways).
- 55 modules.
- 23 hotspots (including regional variants).
- 5 laptops (notebooks).
- 25 other devices (including drones, head-mounted displays, robots, snap-on dongles/adapters, a switch, tablets, TVs, USB terminals/dongles/modems, cameras, a vehicle OBU and a vending machine).
GSA said that not all devices are available immediately and specification details remain limited for some devices.
The bands known to be most supported by all announced 5G devices globally are:
- n78 (TDD 3500Mhz)
- n41 (TDD 2500Mhz)
- n79 (TDD 4700Mhz)
- n77 (FDD 2600Mhz)
- n1 (FDD 2100Mhz)
- n3 (FDD 1800Mhz)
At the end of July 2020, the number of announced devices known to support Bands n1 and n77 had passed the 100 mark for the first time, reaching 107 and 110 devices respectively. Meanwhile the number of announced devices supporting Band 79 had reached 120, the number of announced devices supporting Band n41 had reached 152 and the number of announced devices supporting Band n78 had reached 176.