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Saudi Arabia companies lead the adoption of 5G

October 14, 2020

5G-enabled industries have the potential to deliver $8 trillion in value to the global economy by 2030, according to new research from Nokia.

The ‘5G Business Readiness’ report surveyed 5G maturity of companies in various sectors such as mining and energy, public safety, transportation and health, around the world.

The report found Saudi Arabia to be leading the race in 5G maturity with 13% Saudi companies rated as 5G mature, meaning they have deployed and are planning to expand their 5G networks. Overall, 47% of technology decision makers have a long term 5G strategy.

The report further lists significant variations by sector in terms of 5G maturity. Globally, those with the highest maturity are healthcare (10%), manufacturing (9%), and energy and utilities (7%), while 94% in transportation and 93% in mining sectors are currently investing or have plans to invest in 5G. For Saudi Arabia, these industries could drive the next level of 5G adoption towards contributing to the realisation of the Saudi Vision 2030.

Also, it was observed that companies have accelerated digital investment as their response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Rather than stepping back from technology investment in the wake of the pandemic, most companies have strengthened it. 56% of decision makers surveyed in Saudi Arabia as part of Nokia’s research said they had accelerated their digital transformation programmes as a result of Covid-19.

The report also highlights a clear correlation between 5G deployment and business performance. Companies at an advanced level of 5G adoption were the only group to experience a net increase in productivity (+10%) following Covid-19, and the only group able to maintain or increase customer engagement during the pandemic.

Bernard Najm, Head of the Saudi Arabia Market Unit at Nokia, said: “The new study underlines that 5G adoption has clearly fuelled business success in Saudi Arabia. Companies that have embraced 5G stand to benefit from advantages that go way beyond faster, more efficient and reliable network services. Moreover, the biggest challenges we face as a society – from climate change to the pandemic – can be better tackled through use of the data and technologies that 5G will unleash.”

More interesting findings:

*54% respondents said they have their CXOs support for 5G implementation in their organization;

*New sales opportunities (65%) and improved data management (61%) are the top 2 impacts of 5G for those who have already invested in 5G;

*Two thirds of technology buyers (65%) are planning to invest more in 5G than they did in 3G/4G technology; and

*97% of technology purchasers have had their technology requirements impacted by Covid-19. 99% have had their strategic technology planning impacted.

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