ABI Research, which provides in-depth analysis and quantitative forecasting of trends in global connectivity and other emerging technologies, last week released the findings from its LTE and 5G Market Research. The research looks at the growth of high speed data connectivity, covering both 4G LTE and the 4.5G LTE-Advanced. According to ABI Research, these technologies will have close to 411 million and 22 million subscribers, respectively, by end of this year.
The growth in high speed data connections is spurred mainly due to the rich content that most people have started consuming over the mobile network. Video content, provided by Over-the-Top players, social sharing sites and also subscription based online channels, is becoming hugely popular as more and more people start owning their own smart mobile devices, and as multi-screen technologies enables the same content to be streamed across many end devices including the TV. ABI Research said that based on its 4G network deployment tracker, by the last quarter of this year, 45 networks will have launched their LTE-Advanced services commercially, adding to the 337 mobile networks that have already deployed 4G LTE services by end of June this year.
The new subscriptions in the 4G LTE will also push the sales of LTE devices, with ABI Research estimating nearly 482 million LTE handsets to be shipped throughout this year. By end of 2019, the number of shipments of LTE devices is expected to soar to 1.34 billion.
ABI Research also said that more than 30% of the world's population will have 4G LTE coverage by the end of this year, and shared the case study on South Korea where leading operators SK Telekom and LG U+ are launching unlimited LTE data plans in the next quarter, featuring speeds of 300 Mbps through a 3-band carrier aggregation. South Korea and other regions in North America and Asia Pacific are leading the 4G LTE deployments with Western Europe following closely in terms of subscriptions, added ABI Research.