5G technology, a gateway to the Metaverse

According to a study, users with 5G data services have spent more time in metaverse and extended reality applications, and they believe these will migrate to headsets in the next two years.

Ericsson study finds that 5G is a metaverse enabler.

A recent study released by Ericsson, the Swedish telecommunications giant, looks at the effects that powerful data transmission technologies – such as 5G – are having on the adoption of metaverse and extended reality technologies. The study, which includes Ericsson’s tracking data from 2019, surveyed 49,000 consumers in 37 countries and is said to be representative of the opinions of 1.7 billion users worldwide.

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Data from the study found that 5G users are more interested in immersive technologies than their 4G counterparts. 5G users already spend an hour more per week on metaverse-related platforms and services compared to 4G users. Also according to the report, 5G technology is expected to reach 510 million consumers this year, so metaverse adoption should increase accordingly.

Globally, six out of 10 5G adopters believe the technology is “essential” for the metaverse to be fully realized. According to the study, operators can benefit from integrating their own metaverse applications into 5G plans. Telefonica, a Spanish carrier, and NTT Docomo, a Japanese carrier, are already taking steps to be able to offer metaverse experiences to their users in the future.

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Metaverse migration expected

However, 5G data users believe in one thing according to the survey: The metaverse will surely migrate to other, more immersive platforms in the future. The survey found that half of 5G customers who already use metaverse and extended reality applications believe these services will migrate to XR (extended reality) headsets in the next two years.

The survey results were surprising to the company. On this topic, Jasmeet Singh Sethi, head of Ericsson’s consumerlab, said:

Interestingly, 5G is emerging as an important enabler for early adopters of metaverse-related services, such as socializing, gaming and purchasing digital items in 3D interactive virtual gaming platforms. The amount of time spent by 5G users on augmented reality applications has also doubled in the past two years.

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