5G is already paving the way for the metaverse

As 5G adoption in many parts of the world moves from early adoption to mass adoption, new research from Ericsson highlights consumers’ growing engagement with 5G and their expectations for future use cases.

Titled 5G: The Next Wave, Ericsson’s ConsumerLab report discusses the impact of 5G on consumers who have adopted it since its launch in various countries, and assesses the adoption intention of people who are not 5G subscribers, such as and expectations in this regard. The report predicts that at least 30% of smartphone users intend to purchase a 5G subscription within the next year.

Going through Ericsson’s tracking data covering 5G launches since 2019 and the new consumer survey, Ericsson’s ConsumerLab identified six key trends influencing the next wave of 5G adoption. 5G.

The report covers the behavioral changes caused by the bundle of digital services for 5G offerings from communication service providers – including increased use of enhanced video and augmented reality applications.

The report also discusses the pace of 5G adoption by the general public, consumer satisfaction and 5G-related changes in smartphone usage – and their impact on network traffic.

More than 49,000 consumers in 37 countries were interviewed for this study. This is the largest global 5G survey conducted in the industry to date and the largest consumer survey conducted by Ericsson for any subject. The scope of the survey is representative of the opinions of approximately 1.7 billion consumers worldwide, including 430 million 5G subscribers.

According to Jasmeet Singh Sethi, Head of Ericsson ConsumerLab, “The breadth of the study gives us real insight into consumer opinions and attitudes towards 5G. The report shows that the next wave of potential 5G users have different expectations than the early adopters of of this technology. Overall, consumers see engagement with 5G as an essential part of their future lifestyle. Interestingly, 5G is emerging as an important tool for early adopters to adopt metaverse-related services, such as socializing, gaming and purchasing digital items in 3D interactive virtual augmented reality gaming platforms by 5G users has also doubled over the past two years.”

The report predicts that 5G consumers experienced in using augmented 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 every week think that augmented reality applications will move from smartphones to XR headsets in the next two years, compared to a third of 4G consumers who think so.

Main trends

The report reveals that 5G adoption will be inflation-proofed: 16% of French users still intend to switch to 5G in the next 12 months. Perceived 5G availability is emerging as the new criterion of customer satisfaction. While France boasts 5G coverage of 81% of the population, only 27% of 5G users feel they are connected to 5G more than 50% of the time.

Another finding is that 5G increases the use of enhanced video and online gaming (cloud gaming). There are 1.5 times more 5G users in France using more than three services compared to 4G users.

5G monetization models must also evolve: 60% of mobile users in France want to find customized capacities in 5G offers, meeting specific needs.

Last point, the adoption of 5G will continue to pave the way for the metaverse in France. It should be noted that in France, 30% of 4G users say they will start or increase their use of augmented reality applications in the real world after subscribing to 5G.