Barcelona, February 25: Swedish telecommunications manufacturer Ericsson is ready to switch to 5G globally in 2019, company President and CEO Börje Ekholm said while addressing the media at MWC Barcelona 2019. Stressing the role of 5G as a critical national infrastructure and advantages for early adopters, Ekholm said: "We are truly switching on 5G around the world in 2019." Ericsson has announced the commercial rollout of 5G with 10 service providers and is rolling out 5G networks across the US, Europe, Asia and Australia.
"According to Ericsson ConsumerLab research, one-third of smartphone users globally will change either immediately or within six months to a service provider that switches to 5G. Today, the US and Asia are leading in 5G development," Ekholm said. Mobile broadband consumers, augmented reality- (AR) and virtual reality (VR)-based gaming and sports broadcasts could become first beneficiaries of commercial 5G. Ericsson, Airtel to Collaborate on Intelligent, Predictive Network Operations.
As Ericsson Radio System hardware has been 5G-ready since 2015, the company claims to have shipped more than 3 million 5G-ready radios to customers worldwide. The CEO announced the company's intentions of acquiring Germany-based Kathrein's antenna and filters business for mobile networks to expand Ericsson's capabilities and competencies in the advanced active and passive antenna domain.
Ekholm also said the company would be appointing 4,000 highly-skilled professionals in research and development, production and sales at over 20 locations, including Germany, Romania, Mexico and China.