May 1, 2019. Korea has pulled far ahead in 5G, by almost every measure. Half the country is covered with 5G, with 90% expected by the end of 2019. Korea Telecom has 100,000 subscribers and the country 260,000. The hope is for 10% of users will be on 5G by the end of 2019, four to five million. SKT projects 6-7M subscribers by the end of 2020. That would suggest the three carriers will have 8-10M subscribers in a year. It will be difficult to impossible for any other country to catch up until 2021 or later. 

Takeaways: The government "suggested" the companies move quickly, effective industrial planning. KT CFO Kyung-Keun Yoon on its financial call said, "The investment into 5G is actually inevitable for us." I believe this pattern will be common: one company moves fast on 5G and the others feel they must match. Ericsson data is:

More than half in China, one-third in South Korea and one in four in the US and Australia will change either immediately or within six months should this be the case. 

Ericsson wants to sell radios and is not an objective source, but all indications are that if 5G is offered at the same price as 4G, consumers will buy. I expect this will especially be true later this year when numerous 5G phones hit the market at about US$600. 

Korea is deploying in 3.5 GHz, with an expected peak/laboratory speed of perhaps a gigabit. Consumer speeds should usually be 100-450 megabits down based on data from DT in Warsaw and Nikkei tests in Korea. Samsung is providing radios for KT & SKT; Huawei is servicing LG+. Nokia is behind schedule and is being replaced by Samsung in early plans. 54,000 base stations are active and the country is turning on 3,000 per week. 

The only phone is a US$1300 Samsung Galaxy, but the LG phone is expected shortly. Consumers are complaining about service problems. I'm optimistic they will soon be solved, but everyone is watching. 

Some government data.

5th Generation (5G) Service Inspection Results of TF Meeting

5th Generation (5G) Service Inspection Results of TF Meeting

- 3,690 stations increased compared to last week (54,202 total) -

- Improvement of the 5G service marking system on the handset status bar in May -

□ Ministry of Science and Technology Ministry of Information and Communication (Minister Yoo Young-min, hereinafter referred to as the Ministry of Information and Communication) will hold a '5G (5G) (TF) 'meeting to discuss major issues and solutions for 5G service quality.

□ 5G base stations, which have the biggest influence on service quality including 5G service coverage (hereinafter 'coverage'), total 54,202 stations (4.29 ), which increased by 3,690 stations (7%) compared to 50,512 stations (4.22 standard, 110,751 units) Standard, number of devices: 117,001) .

□ 5G subscribers is the level of about 260,000 people (4.29 standard), and the mobile 3 Living complaints about 5G-related complaints is compared to the initial steady decline , but to a variety of usage from it may cause users discomfort such as base stations, equipment optimization "We are continuing our work .

□ Following the last meeting, three mobile telecommunication companies and manufacturers agreed to improve the phenomenon indicated by 5Gon the handset status bar even if only LTE is currently being used in the presence of a nearby 5G base station ,

ㅇ In May, we will develop and distribute related software so that the actual service can be clearly indicated .

□ Science and Technology Ministry has Task Force (TF) meeting around a nearby distributor, retailer the visit was to check the fifth-generation (5G) mobile communication subscription-related status such as user guides.

O Based on this, Science and Technology Ministry is user 5G service status to recognize clearly the key information such as, and to subscribe to the service front-line field dealer and dealer right in emphasizing that there is a need to be made the guide and faithful to the mobile communication by three on-site training for assignment Respectively.

O The three companies related to mobile site training to thoroughly proceed to the measures to minimize inconvenience to users is also actively reviewing agreed to.

□ next meeting will be held on Thurs., May 9, Science and Technology Ministry and the carrier and the manufacturer is '5G service checks public-private joint TF ' the discussions at the meetings faithfully and 5G service quality to improve to be able to I plan to do my best.

dave ask


Vivo is selling new the iQOO 5G premium quality phone for US$536.

Lei Jun Xiaomi "5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020"5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020" I say sooner

Verizon CEO Ronan Dunne: >1/2 VZ 5G "will approximate to a good 4G service" Midband in "low hundreds" Mbps

CFO John Stephens says AT&T is going to cut capex soon.

Bharti in India has lost 45M customers who did not want to pay the minimum USS2/month. It's shutting down 3G to free some spectrum for 4G. It is cutting capex, dangerous when the 12 gigabytes/month of use continues to rise.

Huawei in 16 days sold 1,000,000 5G Mate 20s.  

China has over 50,000 upgraded base stations and may have more than 200,000 by yearend 2019. The growth is astonishing and about to accelerate. China will have more 5G than North America and Europe combined for several years.

5G phone prices are down to $580 in China from Oppo. Headed under $300 in 2020 and driving demand.

No one believed me when I wrote in May, 90% of Huawei U.S. purchases can be rapidly replaced and that Huawei would survive and thrive. Financial results are in, with 23% growth and increased phone sales. It is spending $17B on research in 2019, up > 10%. 

5G phones spotted from Sharp and Sony

NTT DOCOMO will begin "pre-commercial service Sept 20 with over 100 live bases. Officially, the commercial start is 2020.

 More newsfeed


Welcome  1,800,000 Koreans bought 5G in the first four months. The demand is there, and most of the technology works. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

The estimates you hear about 5G costs are wildly exaggerated. Verizon is building the most advanced wireless network while reducing capex. Deutsche Telekom and Orange/France Telecom also confirm they won't raise capex.

Massive MIMO in either 4G or "5G" can increase capacity 3X to 7X, including putting 2.3 GHz to 4.2 GHz to use. Carrier Aggregation, 256 QAM, and other tools double and triple that. Verizon sees cost/bit dropping 40% per year.

Cisco & others see traffic growth slowing to 30%/year or less.  I infer overcapacity almost everywhere.  

Believe it or not, 80+% of 5G (mid-band) for several years will be slower than good 4G, which is more developed.