5G Research

What should telcos and others do to maximise the strategic value of 5G to their businesses?

Verizon 5G commercialisation

January 2022

Convergence, coexistence or competition: How will 5G and Wi-Fi 6 interact?

As standards for Wi-Fi and cellular become increasingly entwined, there has never been a greater technical possibility for convergence. This report explores the market view of future convergence from both supply and demand side perspectives.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

December 2021

Revisiting convergence: How to address the growth imperative

The forces of divergence and convergence have shifted in favour of the latter, with the move to cloud native and software-defined networking. We evaluate how operators can take advantage of convergence to drive greater efficiencies, scale economies and service innovation.




December 2021

IoT security: The foundation for growth beyond connectivity

The rapidly growing pool of IoT data is creating an enormous and complex attack surface that is a significant vulnerability for enterprises and the wider economy. How can telcos address the need for more sophisticated security and position themselves as trusted partners to enterprises?



Verizon 5G commercialisation

November 2021

Telco Cloud Deployment Tracker: 5G standalone and RAN

New growth from 5G standalone, RAN and SASE is getting underway, amidst maturity and decline in foundational deployments.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

October 2021

How telcos can make the world a safer place

With the rollout of 5G, the telecoms industry could coordinate the development of early warning systems to mitigate the impact of pollution, wildfires, floods, infectious diseases and other threats.



Telstra commercial 5G

August 2021

How telcos can provide a tonic for transport

As public transport systems try to recover from the pandemic, 5G could help them to become more versatile, cost-effective and appealing. By providing reliable and flexible connectivity to transport operators and their customers, telcos could create considerable value for both individuals and society.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

August 2021

Airports: The roles of 5G & private networks

Airports are complex, multi-sector, multi-application, multi-stakeholder sites. They hold opportunities for both public & private 5G networks, although telcos need to choose their roles carefully.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

July 2021

Private networks: Lessons so far and what next

We explore the recent developments in the private network market, regulatory activities and policies on local and shared spectrum, and the different deployment approaches and business cases for traditional telcos and the expanding range of other stakeholders.



Telstra commercial 5G

July 2021

Telstra’s journey in commercialising 5G

This is part 3 of a 3-part series taking an in-depth look at how 5G pioneers have evolved their approaches to commercialisation since launch, navigating a maze of factors such as handset availability, technology immaturity and more. What should others take from their experience to date?



Verizon 5G commercialisation

June 2021

O-RAN: What is it worth?

Global O-RAN capex forecasts 2020–2030, modelling operator investments across four migration pathways.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

June 2021

Why the consumer IoT is stuck in the slow lane

For uptake of Massive IoT connectivity to meet expectations in the B2C and B2B2C markets, telcos will need to dramatically improve coverage and simplify their propositions.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

June 2021

Monetising 5G with consumers: What are the options?

As 5G launches mature, we explore the 5G consumer propositions of 10 telcos to determine how operators are commercialising their 5G investments with this segment.



Verizon 5G commercialisation

May 2021

Verizon’s journey in commercialising 5G

This is part 2 of a 3-part series taking an in-depth look at how 5G pioneers have evolved their approaches to commercialisation since launch, navigating a maze of factors such as handset availability, technology immaturity and more. What should others take from their experience to date?



Verizon 5G commercialisation

April 2021

2020 in review and focus on North America: How should telcos do cloud?

5G is now the main driver of VNF deployment. But can telcos be cloud-native without being hyperscaler-dependent?



SK Telecom 5G commercialisation

April 2021

SK Telecom’s journey in monetising 5G

This is part 1 of a 3-part series taking an in-depth look at how 5G pioneers have evolved their approaches to  commercialisation since launch, navigating a maze of factors such as handset availability, technology immaturity and more. What should others take from their experience to date?



SK Telecom 5G commercialisation

March 2021

The Telco Cloud Manifesto

STL Partners believes that telco cloud is a crucial enabler for operators’ success in the Coordination Age. In this manifesto we explain why.



SK Telecom 5G commercialisation

March 2021

Cloud native: Just another technology generation?

Cloud native networking offers operators a promise of efficiency, automation and innovation to underpin their future in the coordination age. But it should also mean a new operating model, new skills and organisation that few feel they are ready for.



5G energy management

March 2021

Why energy management is critical to 5G success

Operators’ pursuit of growth through 5G is tied to meeting the challenge of lower, cleaner energy and practical guidance on how to achieve this.



Rakuten Google Amazon telecoms strategy

February 2021

Commerce and connectivity: A match made in heaven?

Will many other digital commerce and content companies follow Reliance and Rakuten into the consumer connectivity market?



eSIM 5G forecast

February 2021

eSIM: How to break through the barriers?

Although eSIM technology delivers seamless provisioning and greater flexibility and security – all of which are key to scaling the IoT – adoption has been slow. What should operators do to catalyse a shift towards eSIM in the 5G era?


fixed wireless access forecast

November 2020

Fixed wireless access growth: To 20% of homes by 2025

Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) is becoming a mainstream proposition across urban, rural and developing environments. 5G is an important enabler but not the only one. Unusually, FWA will benefit almost all market players – fixed and mobile operators, vendors, investors and regulators. This report contains our 5-year forecast and recommendations for all players.


5G impact on industries update

October 2020

How 5G can cut 1.7 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions by 2030

Based on extensive industry interviews and detailed modelling, 5G-enabled use cases can reduce carbon emissions in the energy industry by almost 1% by 2030. How – and what – should telcos, the energy sector and governments do to achieve this?

5G B2B2X strategy

September 2020

Growing B2B2X: Taking telcos beyond connectivity and 5G

We review telcos’ current strategies to drive revenue streams beyond connectivity and enhance their role in the Coordination Age, and explore how they can better leverage 5G and other core capabilities to provide unique value in a B2B2X environment.


Cloud gaming - what's the telco play?

September 2020

How mobile operators can build winning 5G business models

As connectivity has become commoditised, launching new network technology can no longer by relied upon to generate operator growth. This report outlines eight guiding principles for operators seeking to move beyond connectivity into tailored vertical solutions.

September 2020

5G’s impact on transport and logistics: $280bn of benefits in 2030

5G connectivity can make travelling by road faster and more efficient. This can drive productivity around the world and help the struggling transport and logistics industry to overcome its challenges.

5G impact on industries update

August 2020

Recovering from COVID: 5G to stimulate growth and drive productivity

We revisit our 2019 forecasts on the economic impact of 5G on industries, as well as re-evaluating the 5G opportunity in a post COVID world. We also include highlights from forthcoming research into the how 5G can drive efficiency and productivity in transport and logistics.

Cloud gaming - what's the telco play?

April 2020

Cloud gaming: What’s the telco play?

This report explores how the cloud gaming market is likely to evolve and what this means for telcos. Beyond providing better connectivity through 5G and edge computing, there are several ways in which telcos can add value to the cloud gaming ecosystem.

April 2020

5G: Bridging the hype, reality and future promises

What should telcos do to bridge the gaps between current hype, actual performance, and future promises on 5G? We argue that a data-driven and forensic approach to roll-out and marketing will be the key, particularly in the uncertain economic environment driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, and review the timelines for future applications.

March 2020

What will make or break 5G growth?

The roadmap from today’s 5G hype to mass consumer adoption and 5G-enabled enterprise applications is far from clear. This report identifies the key factors that will influence 5G development, and plots them on the 5G-aliser, which we will update regularly to track progress in 5G supply and demand.

February 2020

Telco cloud: Why it hasn’t delivered and what must change for 5G

Telco cloud made big promises for the transformation of telecoms. It is a fundamental enabler for 5G and the exciting opportunities ahead. Why hasn’t it delivered yet – and what needs to change?

December 2019

5G network slicing: How to secure the opportunity

Network slicing is an opportunity for telcos to disrupt private networking, but it is new and unknown to enterprises. A ‘hand holding approach’, internal alignment and simplified pilots will be key enablers in its adoption.

November 2019

The changing spectrum landscape: WRC19, 5G and beyond

The 4-yearly ITU World Radio Congress (WRC’19) which sets world policy on radio spectrum, most critically 5G this time, has just ended. What agreements were reached, and what do they mean for traditional telcos, new telcos, telco-sector vendors and regulators?

November 2019

Cloud gaming: New opportunities for telcos?

How telcos should be preparing for the seismic shift in the video games market signposted by Google’s new Stadia cloud gaming service.

October 2019

Curtailing carbon emissions: Can 5G help?

Data volumes are growing inexorably. With the right deployment, how could 5G help to improve networks’ energy performance and curtail carbon emissions?

October 2019

$1.4tn of benefits in 2030: 5G’s impact on industry verticals

The unique benefits of 5G could unlock $1.4tn of value in eight key industries in 2030. What steps should operators take to deliver these benefits? What business and organisational transformation must occur to unlock this opportunity?

October 2019

5G’s impact on manufacturing: $740Bn of benefits in 2030

The unique benefits of 5G could unlock $740bn of value in manufacturing in 2030. This is based on models generated from 100+ interviews and surveys with senior manufacturing industry executives. What steps should operators, manufacturers and others take to achieve these benefits?

October 2019

5G’s healthcare impact: 1 billion patients with improved access in 2030

This report explores the impact of 5G on the healthcare industry. It illustrates the benefits and example use cases, as well as quantifying the potential efficiency gains, that 5G will enable.

October 2019

The 5G Core and NFV: different sides of the same coin?

The 5G network core is supposed to be fully virtualised and cloud-native. But formulation of the 5G standards has not been harmonised with the broader NFV project. What impact will this have on service innovation?

September 2019

5G strategies: Lessons from the early movers

Telcos in South Korea and China have seen strong early demand for new 5G services. Where else is 5G commercially available, and what are the key lessons from early movers on 5G investments and positioning?

May 2019

5G and MVNOs: Slicing up the wholesale market

The advent of 5G and network slicing offer the prospect of a shake-up of the structure of wholesale and MVNO models. What should telcos, regulators, current MVNOs and potential new MVNOs do?

December 2018

5G: The first three years

After considerable hype and uncertainty, the near term developments for 5G are now much more apparent, including which nations will go first, chip and handset availability, and the use of different spectrum bands.

August 2018

Telco economics: Network sharing in a 5G world

Passive network sharing is a well-established practice, but 5G may force telcos to consider more active network sharing to overcome financial, technological and physical constraints. We explore 5G network sharing options and cost structures, drawing lessons from existing agreements.

July 2018

5G: Why Verizon thinks differently – and what to do about it

The US operator is an enthusiastic proponent and strong early backer of 5G. Why, what does it know that is different from the norm and what should other telcos do about it?

June 2018

5G: ‘Just another G’ – yet a catalyst of change

Our predictions for 5G, based on our assessment of the opportunities and barriers it faces, including how and when it will impact different markets. Combined with other technologies and industry trends, 5G will change the shape of the industry, but not in the way that many expect.

January 2018

AR/VR: Won’t move the 5G needle

Virtual reality and augmented reality have the potential to generate vast amounts of telecoms traffic, together with demand for edge computing, network slicing and other 5G capabilities. But when will these technologies come of age?