Even though uncertainty over the launch of the 5G network in India looms large, the global 5G roll-out has spiked to 1,336 cities worldwide, an increase of over 350% in the past one year. According to a VIAVI report, as of January 2021, more than 30% of the world’s countries now have 5G availability.
The new VIAVI report ‘The State of 5G,’ claims that the technology is now in its fifth year of inception has accelerated faster than any previous mobile technology. Also, commercial 5G networks have been deployed in 61 countries worldwide, representing an 80% increase since January 2020.
Among the top three countries with a maximum 5G penetration in cities includes China with 341 cities currently using the technology followed by the United States with 279 cities and South Korea with 85 cities. The UK now has 5G in 54 cities, followed by Spain with 53.
The report also laments the fact that there is a constant rise in the number of countries opting for the new technology. About 27 countries added commercial 5G deployments last year, including three countries that have already reached the top ten in terms of cities covered — Canada with 49 cities, as well as France and Thailand tied at 24.
In Asia alone, the number of cities with 5G technology has jumped to 528 cities. EMEA is now at second place with 459 cities, and the Americas region remains in third place with 5G available across 349 cities. In China, the number of cities with 5G saw a six-fold growth in one year.
According to Sameh Yamany, Chief Technology Officer, VIAVI, the critical nature of reliable network connectivity was highlighted acutely in 2020 as remote work, online learning and video chats with family and friends became the new normal worldwide.
“Overwhelming subscriber appetite for ever-faster speeds and greater bandwidth continues to drive service providers to invest in 5G evolution. However, their success or failure ultimately will be determined by the ability to deliver the best possible network performance and service quality. This requires robust testing protocols and assurance of increasingly complex 5G architectures,” Yamany said.