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India Can Have 40 Mn 5G Users In 1st Year When Service Is Made Available: Ericsson

Consumers in India are willing to pay 50 percent more for 5G plans with bundled digital services, compared to just 10 percent premium for 5G connectivity.

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India can potentially have 40 million 5G users in the first year when the next-generation service is made available to them, a report released by telecom company Ericsson said on Wednesday.

According to Ericsson ConsumerLab report, consumers have shown willingness to pay 50 per cent more for 5G plans bundled with digital services while they want to pay only 10 per cent more for just 5G connectivity.

The data collected from 26 countries in December 2020 for the report shows that consumers across several markets are willing to pay 20-30 per cent more on an average for 5G plans bundled with digital service use cases.

'At least 40 million smartphone users in India could take up 5G in the first year of 5G being made available.

'Consumers in India are willing to pay 50 percent more for 5G plans with bundled digital services, compared to just 10 percent premium for 5G connectivity,' the report said.

Mobile handset companies have been selling 5G ready smartphones in the country but the service is yet to be rolled out.

According to the report, 22 per cent of Indians mobile users have 5G smartphones but with 4G connection.

'Given that Indian service providers are preparing for 5G deployments, the Ericsson Consumer Lab study throws up some interesting consumer insights towards 5G that will help them encourage 5G adoption and meet consumer expectations,' Ericsson India head Nitin Bansal said in a statement.

The government had plans to facilitate roll-out of 5G commercial services by 2020 but it is yet to firm up its plan on spectrum allocation for the next generation technology.

The Department of Telecommunications last week approved some applications to start field trials of 5G services.

'In fact, India has the biggest rise in intention to upgrade with 67 per cent of users expressing an intention to take up 5G once it is available, an increase of 14 percentage points over 2019.

'Seven in 10 potential early adopters of 5G in India expect higher speeds than 4G, while six in 10 expect pricing innovation from communication service providers like 5G data sharing between family members or across devices,' the report said.

The average across 20 markets show that 39 per cent of consumers are willing to upgrade to 5G that can take the total number of 5G subscribers to 300 million in 2021.

'If 5G commercial launches do take place in other markets like India, Brazil and Indonesia, we could surpass this figure (300 million),' the report said.