Wed. Sep 27th, 2023
Telecom Operators Projected to Generate $17 Billion in Revenue from 5G Satellite Networks

A recent research report from Juniper Research reveals that telecom operators are expected to generate an additional $17 billion in revenue from 3GPP-compliant 5G satellite networks between 2024 and 2030. The report emphasizes the importance of partnerships between telecom operators and satellite network operators (SNOs) in order to provide monetizable satellite-based 5G services to subscribers.

According to Juniper Research, SNOs have the necessary capabilities to launch advanced satellite hardware into space and manage the resulting networks. The research predicts that the first commercial launch of a 5G satellite network will take place in 2024, and by 2030, there will be more than 110 million 3GPP-compliant 5G satellite connections in operation.

The report advises operators to prioritize partnerships with SNOs that can launch Geostationary Orbit (GEO) satellites. Geostationary satellites remain fixed above the country they serve, ensuring consistent connectivity. Leveraging their existing billing relationships with mobile subscribers and enterprises, telecom operators can accelerate the adoption of satellite connectivity by integrating satellite services into their existing terrestrial networks.

However, as 6G development accelerates, Juniper Research predicts that operators will increasingly rely on SNOs for service provision. Research author Sam Barker emphasizes that operators should consider not only 5G satellite services when choosing an SNO partner, but also the future plans for 6G networks, including coverage and throughput capabilities.

In line with the growing importance of satellite and terrestrial network integration, the GSMA and the European Space Agency (ESA) signed a Memorandum of Intent (MOI) earlier this year. The collaboration aims to develop new technologies that enable better integration with 5G and 6G systems. The GSMA Foundry innovation accelerator and ESA’s 5G/6G Hub will collaborate to advance the digital transformation of mobile communication and explore the potential of next-generation satellite-enabled connectivity.