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Ericsson at MWC 2018: 5G open for business

February 28, 2018  

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Ericsson president and CEO Börje Ekholm declared 5G open for business during a briefing to media and analysts at Mobile World Congress 2018 and outlined the key technological enablers — from radio access to network slicing and machine intelligence — that will make 5G a commercial success.

“We will focus not only on why and what, but also on how. This is what our customers – the service providers – want to discuss.”

Ekholm pointed out three fundamental areas where service providers need to succeed:

*Efficiency – bringing the cost per gigabyte down

*Digital experience – improving customer experience and cost reduction

*Creating new revenue streams based on 5G and IoT use cases.

To date,  Ericsson said it has signed 38 memorandums of understanding with service providers for trials.

5G will be built on multiple use cases, and Ekholm underscored enhanced mobile broadband as the first large-scale global use case for 5G.

“This is based on surging data traffic and the need to provide better user experience,” an Ericsson press release stated. “Between 2017 and 2023, data traffic is projected to rise at a compound annual growth rate of 40%. This means eight times more traffic per site.

But enhanced mobile broadband is not only about speed and user experience, it is also about network efficiency. A site fully evolved with 4G and 5G capacity will deliver mobile data at one tenth of the cost compared to a basic 4G site today.”

Telstra CEO Andy Penn joined Ekholm on stage where he talked about the importance of being an early mover in 5G.

Ekholm also addressed the achievements of 4G early adopters in terms of yearly revenue growth and market share.

“We don’t know which use cases will ultimately be the most important for 5G, but we know that early adopters tend to get a sustainable advantage.” Ekholm said. “By having a network that is ready for 5G, service providers can choose the time to turn on 5G traffic.”