- By 2023, the digital economy will account for more than a half of global GDP. Investors believe that Southeast Asia will experience the fastest digital economy growth over the next 10 years
- Worldwide, there will be 9.8 billion mobile connections in 2030, 5.3 billion of which will be 5G, making it the mainstream.
- Intergenerational evolution of connectivity technology increases economic benefits by approximately 15%.
[Barcelona, Spain, March 17, 2023] Huawei, together with EI Studios, an Economist Impact division, and GSMA Intelligence, released a report titled Driving Development: The Impact of ICT Investments on the Digital Economy. The report elaborates on the new trends in global digital economy in the post-pandemic era, and quantitatively and qualitatively assesses the relationship between ICT investment and development of the global digital economy. The report aims to provide valuable insights into how the ICT industry can promote the development of the global digital economy.
Driving Development: The Impact of ICT Investments on the Digital Economy
In December 2022, conducted a survey involving 500 individuals worldwide, of whom 400 were corporate executives, 50 were decision makers, and 50 were institutional investors. EI Studios also invited executives of top international strategic consulting firms, world-renowned operators, and industry organizations to participate in detailed interviews, through which it obtained a large amount of key information.
Investment in ICT infrastructure will drive the Fourth Industrial Revolution
The report found that ICT infrastructure and industry digitalization that it enables are set to drive the Fourth Industrial Revolution, similar to how steam power and mechanization drove the First Industrial Revolution three centuries ago.
The contribution of the digital economy to global GDP has been steadily growing over the past few years. Third-party data shows that by 2023, the digital economy will account for more than a half of global GDP. Investors believe that Southeast Asia will experience the fastest digital economy growth over the next 10 years, followed by North America and Western Europe.
5G is a major global trend and intergenerational evolution increases economic benefits by 15%
According to GSMA Intelligence research, 5G mobile technology is now clearly a global trend. Worldwide, it is predicted that there will be 9.8 billion mobile connections in 2030, 5.3 billion of which will be 5G. Meanwhile, the percentage of 2G, 3G, and 4G mobile connections will all decline, and 5G will become mainstream. According to a GSMA Intelligence survey of global operators in 2022, 91% of operators surveyed said 5G connectivity services (e.g., mobile and fixed wireless access) are now their top priority.
The company's research also found that over a long period in the past, on average, a 10% increase in mobile adoption increased GDP by 1%. The economic benefits increased by approximately 15% when connections upgraded from one mobile network technology to a more advance one (e.g., 2G to 3G, and 3G to 4G). This is a clear indicator of how the intergenerational evolution of networks from 4G to 5G, and even to 5.5G, will be a key contributor to GDP growth.
In addition, 5G technology can boost the digital economy. There is intense focus on technology adoption and implementation, such as the increased use of AI, machine learning, and cloud and edge computing. However, the base requirement for all of these advances is the availability of high-speed, reliable 5G network connectivity and even the more advanced 5.5G. Ultimately, without sustained investment in networks, the gains from technological developments will be limited.
Connectivity, computing, and green ICT will vitalize the digital economy
According to the report, ICT investments traditionally focus on connectivity and computing. However, green ICT has developed into a third key area in this respect. A combination of efforts across these three key areas will continuously stimulate the digital economy and facilitate sustainable development.
Dr. Philip Song, Chief Marketing Officer of Huawei Carrier Business, said, "The 5G prosperity worldwide is driving the digital economy, and the Driving Development: The Impact of ICT Investments on the Digital Economy report is coming out at the right time. The key data and conclusions in the report prove the contributions of ICT infrastructure to the digital economy, while also reflecting global operators' expectations to build on the success of 5G to make the leap to 5.5G." Song also said, "Huawei calls on operators and industry partners around the world to work together and use the GUIDE business blueprint to lead the world into a better future."
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