The potential use of fixed wireless for access networks in 5G mobile communication systems cannot be ignored. Although their characteristics are somewhat different, these concepts can be combined to realize cost-efficient high-speed communication services, with very low latencies and ultra-high system capacity. The presented technologies will enable realizing broadband connectivity that is at least an order of magnitude faster than today's LTE networks. To reach this goal, it will not only be necessary to improve radio access technology performance but also assume a significantly higher degree of interworking between mobile and fixed radio systems.
5G, which aims to provide significantly higher data rates than the current LTE mobile communication systems, is still under discussion. There are several fundamental approaches to achieving this goal. Based on extensive research and development, it is possible to identify five different key technologies that might be used. They are 1) enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB), 2) ultra-reliable low latency communications (URLLC), 3) massive machine-type communications (mMTC), 4) enhanced mobile broadband – ultra-reliable low latency communications (E-MBB_URLLC), 5) heterogeneous networks (HetNet). A large part of these concepts depends on future radio access technology, especially the use of millimetre-wave frequencies.
5G FWA Market: Current Scenario and Factors Affecting its Growth
The future of wireless has included broadband for a while now. However, with 5G on the horizon, wireless broadband is likely to become more widespread than ever before. The new standard presents opportunities for both carriers and customers alike. One important aspect is that 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) will replace some of today's copper wireline connections. It will be interesting to see how this affects the number of traditional FWA providers in the market. Many companies offer this type of service right now including AT&T, Comcast, CenturyLink, Charter Communications, and others. However, several factors suggest these numbers could rise significantly if they haven't already by 2019 when 5G becomes available. While traditional FWA using wireless LTE technology will still be the most popular, there are plenty of other reasons that carriers and customers should want 5G FWA including:
While it's likely not everyone will need gigabit speeds at home, the sheer versatility of 5G makes it a desirable technology for both carrier networks and customer service platforms alike. With this in mind, demand is expected to increase significantly as more companies choose to invest in it rather than LTE or other existing technologies.
Growing Inclination towards High-Speed Internet to Boost the Demand for 5G FWA
Demand for 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) services will grow rapidly in the next few years. The report found that early adopters are expected to include customers with high demand for multi-gigabit bandwidths, including consumers working from home or small businesses. Download speeds of 30Mbps are currently considered acceptable only for specific applications such as streaming video or receiving high-definition television. However, when moving to FWA, consumers can expect 10 times faster download speeds - up to 300Mbps - and four times faster upload speeds - up 200 Mbps - which is offering greater utility.
To meet this increased demand, operators are expected to deliver their services over broad geographical areas rather than city centers but will need to combine high-frequency millimeter wave spectrum, which can carry large amounts of data at high speeds, with the wider coverage capabilities of the lower frequency band.
North America to Hold Dominant Position in 5G FWA Market
Overall, the report found that demand for 5G FWA services is expected to grow strongly in all regions over coming years. It forecast strong growth in North America and Europe driven by increasing demand for fixed broadband access, while Asia Pacific will see robust growth thanks to growing consumer demand for wireless applications such as streaming video on mobile devices. Wherein, China is also expected to see strong demand for 5G FWA with volumes expected to continue growing through 2022 before reaching a plateau as most users are assumed to have access to alternative technologies such as fiber or cable broadband.
5G fixed wireless access (FWA) services in North America start to become commercially available in 2019, when Verizon 5G Home and AT&T's mobile 5G network launch. The major drivers for FWA demand are eMBB applications, which promise better throughputs than 4G/LTE networks. However, the American market is still characterized by the presence of fixed-only broadband subscriptions, which suggests that there will be many potential customers who can use FWA, but choose not to.
5G fixed wireless access (FWA) is an alternative technology for last-mile broadband connectivity between homes/offices and service providers, with higher throughputs than 4G/LTE networks as well as lower latency. In the first half of 2019, Verizon 5G Home and AT&T's mobile 5G network became commercially available. The major drivers behind the increased consumption of FWA services will be eMBB (Enhanced Mobile Broadband), which provides higher throughputs than 4G/LTE networks. Fixed wireless access is expected to grow faster than any other wireless technology in the coming years, because many consumers are willing to switch from traditional last-mile technologies like DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) and cable to FWA.
Vodafone Group (NYSE: VOD) has already announced plans for a commercial rollout of its 5G network in 16 cities across the U.K., including London, Cardiff and Edinburgh. Huawei Technologies Co Ltd (SHE: 002502), Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) and Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) have also been selected as suppliers for Vodafone's 5G network rollout later this year. Operators will be upgrading their existing networks to support 5G ahead of the first deployments, which are expected from 2019/20. They will need to invest more in fixed broadband infrastructure, including fiber backhaul links between cell sites and central offices.
Please Note: The above mentioned segmentation/companies/countries are likely to differ in the actual report as they are based on preliminary research.