COVID-19 Impact on the Global 5G Fixed Wireless Access Market

Posted by Tom C on December 17th, 2020

The 5G fixed wireless access market was valued at USD 503million in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 86,669million by 2026, at a CAGR of 135.9% from 2020 to 2026.

Machine-to-machine (M2M) communication is the next-generation technology expected to drive automation across a majority of industrial verticals and connect multiple devices simultaneously. The key reasons for the increased adoption of new M2M technologies are to ensure improved connectivity for smooth communication among different machines and lower their power consumption. Rising demand for connected devices for long-range connectivity is expected to drive the growth of the market for M2M/IoT communication devices, such as smart meters, smart streetlights, livestock monitoring devices, and smart parking systems. The growth of M2M technology is expected to further fuel the adoption of connected devices (or IoT devices).

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Telemetry, telematics, connected devices, and other remote monitoring applications demand M2M connections to offer enhanced after-sales services and support. Businesses can also manage their assets and infrastructures efficiently through fleet management solutions or advanced metering infrastructures (AMIs). The benefits of remote monitoring have already been recognized in supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and fleet management applications. Consumer electronics, automobile telematics, and point-of-sale (PoS) are relatively new use cases to 5G technology and are expected to witness increasing adoption of M2M technology-based solutions. Therefore, M2M applications require ubiquitous, interoperable communication technologies. Most existing communication network solutions have limitations in terms of coverages; hence, they are not the appropriate solutions for M2M applications. However, 5G, a next-level technology, is anticipated to offer intelligent and high-speed broadband features that ensure uninterrupted connectivity between machines and people, irrespective of their locations. Moreover, 5G is expected to offer low latency, thereby enabling M2M applications to transmit large volumes of data at a fast rate with a quick response. Thus, 5G is expected to provide the fundamental infrastructure required by connected devices at factories, offices, and homes for increased bandwidth at reduced costs.

Several telecommunication operators and government authorities have delayed the 5G rollout plans and spectrum auction. For instance, in India, the Department of Telecommunication (DoT) has postponed the 5G spectrum auction to 2021. In China, six big 5G projects, including an industrial internet project in the Guangdong province, a hospital-related project in the Jiangxi province, and a police-related project in the Gansu province, have been postponed since January 2020. This is expected to slow down the deployment of 5G infrastructure as forecasted previously. Currently, the demand for 5G is low; however, 5G has witnessed potential applications during the COVID-19 outbreak in China. The Chinese government is using 5G for diagnosis and telemedicine along with the implementation of AI and machine learning to control further spread of the outbreak. For instance, in Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, Huawei Technologies has built a 5G network at the Wuhan Huoshenshan Hospital, which played a crucial role in treating the patients affected by COVID-19. The network included the installation of small cells as the hospital is in a remote area. Also, China is using 5G-enabled robots for telemedicine and control medical equipment in distant healthcare centers.

The supply chain members and government authorities are expected to work in collaboration to exploit the potential applications of 5G. This will accelerate 5G investment plans and generate significant demand for 5G equipment during 2020–2025.

Based on application, the residential segment is expected to account for the largest share in the 5G fixed wireless access marketby 2026. 5G fixed wireless is an ideal alternative mainly for residential customers as users can get gigabits of speeds at a competitive price, with no installation issues.

North America is expected to hold the largest share of the global 5G fixed wireless access market in the 2020. The US and Canada are expected to adopt 5G FWA solutions and services at a high rate. The proliferation of 5G networks in the region is increasing mainly due to the presence of key market players. For instance, Qualcomm Technologies (US), Mimosa Networks, Inc. (US), Cohere Technologies, Inc.(US), Cellular South, Inc.(C Spire) (US), TELUS Corporation (Canada), United States Cellular Corporation (US), AT&T Inc. (US), Verizon Communications Inc.(US), Cisco (US) are among a few major companies in the 5G market that are actively participating in the development of 5G FWA solutions.

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Tom C

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Tom C
Joined: July 2nd, 2020
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