The news: Despite the wide availability of 5G-enabled devices, people in the US spend less than 25% of their online time connected to 5G networks, per Digital Trends. 5G device adoption is quickly outpacing 5G coverage, which means carriers are under pressure to cover their growing 5G customer bases.
How we got here: 14 million users subscribed to mobile 5G services in the US last year, and IDC predicted that 7.4% YoY shipment growth would be bolstered by premium 5G devices like Apple’s iPhone 13, putting pressure on service providers and carriers to expand 5G coverage.
The problem: Despite marketing broad 5G availability and coverage, most carriers are still building out their standalone 5G networks—deploying networks that use 5G cells for both signaling and information transfer without piggybacking on earlier 4G-LTE networks.
What’s next: The onus is on carriers to build out standalone 5G connectivity beyond the limited pockets of access across US cities. Consumers are already losing interest in 5G service and its advantages—67% of consumers are not excited about 5G, per Waveform.
Related content: Eager to learn more about 5G US mobile network users? Check out our 2021 overview report.
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