Home5G & BeyondPrivate LTE/5G networks to rise tenfold in five years

    Private LTE/5G networks to rise tenfold in five years


    Berg Insight notes that most 5G private nets are trials, and says spectrum access is the critical factor

    A research report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight predicts that private LTE/5G network deployments will increase tenfold between 2021 and 2026.

    Today there are more than 1,000 private LTE networks deployed globally for various use cases.

    By 2026, the number of private LTE/5G network deployments are expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 57% to reach 13,500 networks at the end of the period.

    Private 5G network deployments, estimated at between 200 and 300 networks, are mainly concentrated on trial and pilot deployments
    Berg Insight defines a private cellular network as a 3GPP-based private LTE/5G network built for the sole use of a private entity such as an enterprise or government organisation.

    Referred to as non-public networks by the 3GPP, private LTE/5G networks use spectrum defined by the 3GPP and LTE or 5G NR base stations, small cells and other radio access network (RAN) infrastructure to transmit voice and data to edge devices.

    Berg says that advances in cellular technology, along with the increasing availability of dedicated spectrum for industries – such as announced in France last week – are transforming the private cellular network market from a niche to a substantial market, especially in Europe.

    The research house adds, “Developments open a range of opportunities for the cellular ecosystem, fuelling a new wave of investments by established network equipment vendors but also attracting new entrants.”

    New entrants

    The main RAN vendors, Ericsson, Nokia and Huawei, are expected to play significant roles, even as these integrated solution providers and are challenged by smaller RAN equipment providers including Airspan Networks, JMA Wireless, Mavenir, CommScope and Samsung Networks, which provide competitive LTE/5G radio products.

    Specialised core network software vendors include Druid Software and Athonet, as well as Affirmed Networks and Metaswitch, which were acquired by Microsoft in mid-2020.

    In line with the trend of network functions virtualisation, the major cloud service providers have also increased their focus on the telecomns market. Besides AWS and Microsoft [and presumably Google Cloud], Celona and Cisco have also entered the market in recent time.
    “Spectrum availability is the most important enabling factor for the adoption of private LTE/5G networks”, said Fredrik Stalbrand, Senior Analyst at Berg Insight. .

    “The private 5G ecosystem is however still in an early stage, especially on the device side. “As a wider selection of 5G NR devices becomes available, an increasing number of private 5G network trials will convert into full deployments starting in 2023”, he concluded.
    Download report brochure: Private LTE/5G Networks for IoT Applications