Ericsson’s largest consumer study shows 5G is already paving the way for the metaverse

STOCKHOLM, October 13, 2022 /PRNewswire/ —

  • Ericsson ConsumerLab’s 5G: The Next Wave report is the largest consumer 5G research yet.
  • Compared to 4G users, 5G users spend an average of one hour more per week on metaverse-related services, such as gaming in virtual worlds and augmented reality (AR).
  • Half of 5G consumers who already use extended reality (XR) services believe AR apps will move from smartphones to XR headsets within two years

As 5G adoption in many parts of the world crosses the threshold from early adopters to mass adoption, a major new study from Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) – the industry’s largest global study of its kind to today – underscores growing consumer engagement with 5G and their expectations for next-generation use cases.

Titled 5G: The Next Wave, Ericsson ConsumerLab’s report discusses the impact 5G has had on early adopters since its launch in various countries, as well as assessing the intent of non-5G subscribers to adopt the technology – and their associated expectations. The report predicts that at least 30% of smartphone users intend to sign up for a 5G subscription within the next year.

Combining Ericsson’s tracking data covering 5G launches since 2019 and the new consumer survey allowed Ericsson ConsumerLab to identify six key trends impacting the next wave of 5G adoption.

The report covers behavioral changes triggered by the bundling of digital services into 5G plans by communications service providers – in particular the increased use of enhanced video and augmented reality (AR) applications.

The report also discusses the speed of consumer 5G adoption, whether consumer demands are met and 5G-related changes in smartphone behavior – and their impact on network traffic.

More than 49,000 consumers in 37 countries were surveyed in the study – the largest global consumer survey related to 5G in the industry to date and the largest consumer survey conducted by Ericsson on no matter what subject. The scope of the survey is representative of the opinions of approximately 1.7 billion consumers worldwide, including 430 million 5G subscribers.

Jasmeet Singh Sethihead of Ericsson ConsumerLab, said, “The breadth of the research gives us authentic insight into consumer views and attitudes towards 5G. The report shows that the next wave of potential 5G users have different expectations of the technology than early adopters. Overall, consumers see engagement with 5G as an essential part of their future lifestyle.”

He adds, “Interestingly, 5G is becoming a significant enabler for early adopters to adopt metaverse-related services such as socializing, gaming, and purchasing digital items on interactive 3d virtual game platforms. virtual reality apps from 5G users have also doubled over the past two years.”

The report predicts that 5G consumers with experience using extended reality (XR) functionality are likely to be early adopters of future devices, as they are more positive about the potential of mixed reality glasses. Half of 5G users who already use XR-related services weekly think AR apps will move from smartphones to XR headsets in the next two years, compared to a third of 4G consumers who share this view.

5G – The Next Wave Report: Six Key Trends

  1. 5G adoption to resist inflation: At least 510 million consumers in 37 markets are expected to adopt 5G in 2023.
  2. The next wave of demanding users: The next wave of 5G users have high expectations on 5G performance, especially network coverage, compared to early adopters – who care about the innovative new services made possible by 5G.
  3. The perceived availability of 5G is emerging as the new benchmark for satisfaction among consumers. Geographic coverage, indoor/outdoor coverage, and congregational hotspot coverage are more important in creating user perception than population coverage.
  4. 5G increases the use of enhanced video and augmented reality. Over the past two years, the time spent on AR apps by 5G users has doubled to two hours per week.
  5. 5G monetization models should evolve: Six out of 10 consumers expect 5G offerings to move beyond greater data volume and speeds to on-demand network capabilities tailored to specific needs.
  6. 5G adoption is paving the way to the metaverse. On average, 5G users already spend one hour more per week in metaverse-related services than 4G users. They also expect two hours of additional video content to be consumed weekly on mobile devices, including 1.5 hours on AR/VR glasses by 2025.

Related links:
Ericsson 5G: The Next Wave Report
Ericsson ConsumerLab: the voice of the consumer
Ericsson Industry Lab: the voice of business, industry and society
Ericsson 5G
Ericsson Roundtable: How 5G Extended Reality (XR) Can Change the Entertainment Industry
Ericsson Blog: 12 Use Cases for the Metaverse in the Coming Years – Ericsson


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Ericsson enables communications service providers to capture the full value of connectivity. The company’s portfolio covers the following business areas: networks, software and cloud services, enterprise wireless solutions, global communications platform, and technologies and new businesses. It is designed to help our customers go digital, increase efficiency and find new sources of revenue. Ericsson’s investments in innovation have brought the benefits of mobility and mobile broadband to billions of people around the world. Ericsson shares are listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and Nasdaq New York.

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