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GSMA report: 5G coverage set to accelerate across APAC, usage gap remains significant

Julian Gorman, Head of Asia Pacific, GSMA talks to EITN about 5G trends in APAC

EITN: Why is the take up of edge computing and ultra-responsive systems and private networks using 5G technologies, still so low? Is it because 5G has to vie with other technologies as the connectivity technology of choice? What are its closest competitors?

Julian: The 5G journey began with non-standalone (NSA) technology, which centred on higher data transfer speeds and low latency. However, as Standalone 5G (SA) breaks through, the primary

5G value proposition will increasingly shift away from speed and towards enhanced functionalities such as edge computing, ultra-responsive systems, and private networks. With a relative majority of 23% of network operators planning to focus primarily on Edge computing by 2024.

It’s about moving away from the initial rollout phase to creating more advanced 5G use cases with these new capabilities.

EITN: Please explain definition of technologies and services that contribute to 5% of GDP. How does GSMA intend to grow its contribution from 5%? What are the factors that will enable its growth?

Julian: The mobile industry continues to deliver benefits to the economy and wider society, primarily by providing the connectivity that enables the growth of small businesses and digital transformation of enterprises and granting access to life-enhancing services and tools for citizens.

Additionally, existing, and new fibre infrastructure will play a vital role in delivering optimum backhaul capacity for high-performance mobile networks, particularly 5G.

The economic contribution to the GDP of the mobile ecosystem (comprising mobile operators, infrastructure service providers, retailers and distributors of mobile products and services, mobile handset manufacturers, and mobile content, application, and service providers) is estimated by measuring their value added to the economy.

5G value proposition will increasingly shift away from speed and towards enhanced functionalities such as edge computing, ultra-responsive systems, and private networks. With a relative majority of 23% of network operators planning to focus primarily on Edge computing by 2024.

This includes direct impact from employee compensation, business operating surplus, and taxes, as well as the indirect impact reflected by the increase in productivity brought about by the increased use of mobile services and technologies across the entire economy.

EITN: Is there a strategy for cellular tech like 5G to co-exist with fixed line connectivity? What is that strategy?

Julian: While the growth of fixed line voice services is stagnating as consumers and businesses increasingly shift to mobile solutions, fixed networks will remain a key element of the overall connectivity landscape.

They provide an opportunity for operators to deliver converged services to customers.

Additionally, existing, and new fibre infrastructure will play a vital role in delivering optimum backhaul capacity for high-performance mobile networks, particularly 5G.

EITN: Are any of the 360 events going to be streamed or be viewable remotely?

Julian: Yes, the event will be streamed at Mobile World Live.