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The forthcoming launch of the first 5G mobile networks will pave the way for a new era in mobile. Those were the sentiments expressed by GSMA Director General, Mats Granryd, at Mobile World Congress 2018 in Barcelona.

The Director General of the GSMA made the comments after being pressed for his reaction to the publication of the GSMA Mobile Economy report which has predicted that migration from 4G to 5G networks are expected to accelerate exponentially in the next few years.

The comprehensive report conducted by the GSMA estimate that 4G will account for 53% of all global connections by 2025, which represents an increase of 29% from a similar report compiled in 2017. The GSMA Mobile Economy report also projects that 5G networks will account for a further 14% following the commercialization and subsequent launch of 5G networks expected to commence later this year.

The Head of the GSMA has highlighted the need for greater investment and modernized regulatory frameworks and environments in order to help facilitate the mobile industry as it makes the transition towards 5G.

Granryd said, "We are at the dawn of a new era in mobile with the imminent launch of the first 5G networks and the Internet of Things (IoT) which is poised to further transform the way we live and work. As the mobile industry moves into the 5G era, the need for pro-investment, pro-innovation policies and modernized regulatory regimes has never been greater."

The GSMA Director General stressed that a more progressive approach towards spectrum, infrastructure and economics was critical in order to extract the maximum opportunities presented by the next-generation technology for both consumers and businesses.

Granryd added, "Streamlined regulation and further policy developments in three main areas - spectrum, infrastructure and economics - is key to realizing the full potential of 5G for consumers, society and industry."

In addition to this, the report by the GSMA also predicts that uptake in the Internet of Things will flourish and has attributed this acceleration to the proliferation of use cases for Smart Cities. The Smart Cities sector continues to expand with governments on a global basis aggressively pursuing Smart City projects in an effort to address a number of issues like urbanization and traffic congestions by utilizing technologies like smart homes, smart parking and smart lighting.

It was further disclosed that as it stands, around 23 mobile operators have commercially launched 38 mobile IoT networks worldwide using the NB-IoT and LTE-M standards.

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