5G telecom usage accounts for just 2 percent of users

5G consumption has accounted for 2.2% of all network traffic between January and September 2022, a figure that, however, means quadrupling the consumption of the entire previous year with 87,233 terabytes compared to 21,154 in 2021, the first year that the use of this technology was measured by the National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC).

According to data from the regulator, 4G continues to be the majority technology for connectivity to the mobile network with four million terabytes of the 4.4 that were generated up to September in mobile networks.

Thus, even 3G technology, whose shutdown is expected in the next two years, accumulates more traffic than the fifth generation of mobile connectivity (5G) with 326,060 terabytes, four times more.

However, 5G continues to grow exponentially and both the second and third quarters of 2022 have generated more traffic than in all of 2021. The same is true of overall network traffic, which has skyrocketed by 33.3% between July and September compared to the same period of the previous year, and that it is expected to continue to do so with the proliferation of artificial intelligence.

To date, many users have had mobiles with 5G coverage, but this is provided through a mixed system in which the core continues to be 4G, functioning in practice as an intermediate element between 4G and 5G that does not squeeze the capacity of the new technology, which will begin to be used with the so-called 5G ‘Standalone’, in which all the equipment involved is 5G.

Last year has been the year of the take-off of the installation of base stations to transmit this technology, since at the end of 2022, Telefónica, Orange and Vodafone have had to deliver the first reports of compliance with their coverage obligations in the band of 700 MHz, the most suitable for indoor consumption and, therefore, private uses.

Thus, Orange and Vodafone had to provide coverage to 30% of populations with more than 50,000 inhabitants by the end of the year and Telefónica, to those with more than 20,000, to which is added a series of roads and communication nodes such as stations and airports.