ABI Research predicted migration to 5G-Advanced would reshape the mobile and wearables markets to the tune of 481.9 million devices by 2027, but was decidedly less bullish on private network deployments.

In a whitepaper, ABI Research director David McQueen noted the evolution toward 5G-Advanced would fully expose the value of the ecosystem while enabling the full potential of the technology.

ABI Research forecast 4.9 million mobile devices compatible with 5G-Advanced will ship in 2024, rising to 242.9 million in 2026.

The research company was also optimistic on 5G reduced capability (RedCap), which McQueen noted could exponentially increase the number of connected mobile products over the coming year.

ABI Research expects 40.8 million unit shipments in 2026 and 82 million in 2027.

McQueen predicted a large impact on smartwatches.

“Moreover, due to the very nature of RedCap being applied to energy-constrained, low-cost products, the industry could see massive uptake in the key sectors of wireless headsets and personal trackers.”

Senior analyst Alan Gergs noted forecasts of a rise in the addressable market for private networks from $4.8 billion in 2022 to more than $95 million in 2030 would mostly be fuelled by 4G deployments rather than 5G, due to enterprises awaiting features including ultra-reliable low-latency communication or enhanced massive machine type communication to increase the value proposition of their deployments.

He stated while 3GPP has frozen Release-16, chipsets and devices have yet to hit the market.

“As these chipsets will only start to emerge toward the end of 2023, reaching scale in 2024, enterprise 5G will mature much more slowly than previously anticipated.”