According to findings from the latest Ericsson Mobility Report, Mobile subscriptions in sub-Saharan Africa are likely to hit one billion in 2021.
The report, launched on Tuesday, November 16, also listed Nigeria among top five countries for the third quarter net global mobile subscriptions additions.
Mobility Report provides an insight into the future of 5G networks, including a forecast of 150 million 5G mobile subscriptions by 2021. The 5G networks, based on standards that meet ITU IMT-2020 requirements, are expected to be deployed commercially from 2020.
South Korea, Japan, China and the US are predicted to lead with the first and fastest, 5G subscription uptake. The 5G will connect new types of devices, enabling new use cases related to the Internet, with the transition opening up new industries and verticals to ICT transformation.
The regional report, covering sub-Saharan Africa, shows that while total mobile subscription penetration currently sits at 80 per cent, the region expects to see 100 per cent mobile penetration by 2021 with over one billion mobile subscriptions.
In sub-Saharan Africa, the GSM/EDGE is still the most popular technology for mobile subscriptions. With a 500 million subscriptions forecast in 2015, it still accounts for over 70 per cent of total mobile subscriptions.
This is, however, expected to change rapidly up to 2021, when the WCDMA/HSPA, combined with the LTE, will account for almost 80 per cent of subscriptions.
By the end of 2021, monthly mobile data traffic in sub-Saharan Africa is expected to be almost 2,200 petabytes. Between 2015 and 2021, data traffic is projected to grow 15 times in sub-Saharan Africa, driven by an increased spread of LTE.