One of the best ways to understand telecom

I’ve been covering the industry since 1999, always trying to get closer to the truth. I’ve learned from hundreds of the best. If you’re trying to understand telecom, I’m always happy to exchange ideas. If you’re in the industry and need answers, ask me. Our consulting rates are fair and if I can’t help you I’ll say so. Dave Burstein [email protected]

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The best, fastest way for you and your team to learn the latest. An informed expert on call when you need answers or an outside opinion. A news service customized by hand for what you need.

All based on what you tell me are your key interests. IoT in 5G? Edge in the Data Center? Germany competition? Spectrum sharing? Price of phones? Is Open-RAN ready? or …
I spend untold hours researching every week, with help from Google translate. Guaranteed to find useful information easily missed.

  • A monthly customized news presentation, probably via Zoom, with plenty of time for your questions.
  • Up to six calls looking for specific information, such as the history of a new customer or a country’s regulatory policy. Including a reasonable amount of research.
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  • Regular emails when I discover news important to you. E.g. The customer of a client has a new initiative that would be natural for sales follow-up.

Targeted package, $300/month, paid quarterly. Satisfaction guaranteed or money refunded.

Press

Happy to answer questions, offer background, share data and sources, and quickly provide quotes. Dave Burstein 347-603-6442 [email protected]
Analysis Branch: 100 million 5G subscribers in August, 84M+ in Q2, prove 5G is real (August 31)
  • 5G use is exploding. At the end of June, China had ~65 million 5G phones, Korea 7.35 million, the U.S. 4-5 million, and the rest of the world perhaps 4 million. 5
  • As Chinese phone prices (US$199-260) reach the West and Apple releases the 5G iPhone, monthly growth will reach more than 20 million per month. See 5G Phones $199-260
  • By August, 5G users have reached 100 million. 14 million phones shipped in China in July
  • “5G still doesn’t have any use cases,” writes top Wall Street analyst Craig Moffett.

Releases in draft: December 2020 estimate of 210 million. 2022 1.5B.
Quoted
Washington Post: Burstein estimates Chinese consumers will buy up to 200 million 5G phones next year …
NY Times: It’s impossible to have a widespread network that quickly …

Consulting & Services

When you need analysis, research, or project management, consider us. A different point of view on your plans. A perspective that’s informed by very wide experience. Call me. Dave Burstein [email protected] 347-603-6442

We have little overhead so our fees are usually somewhat lower.

250M 5G Subscribers End 2020 150M Q3

230-250 million 5G yearend as phone prices fall to US$199-260. 5G subscriber numbers are exploding. 100-120 million 5G phones will sell in Q4, many of them Apples. China will add at least 50 million. 70% of the phones selling in China are 5G and likely over 90% by mid-2021. I’m reworking my 2021 &…

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5G Need to Know: Sales exploding, performance poor, 0 new apps

147 million subs September 2020, 117 million in China. Yearend likely 230-250 million, including 30-50 million iPhone 12. Decent 5G phones cost US$200-250 in China, with 6.5″ screens and multiple cameras. As China prices move West, 2021 will blow out. Forget gigabit speeds and 1 ms latency. Mid-band speeds mostly 100-400 Mbps. Low-band typically…

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562,656 Koreans go back to 4G

5G has so few practical uses that half a million Koreans have gone back to 4G. The saving is modest; otherwise, millions would have gone back. 4G speeds averaged over 50 Mbps in 2019. 4G is probably much faster today. 5G averages 300 Mbps across about a third of the country. So what? What…

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844 low latency Starlink satellites: Musk changes rural possibilites

Starlink latency averages 30 ms, similar to 5G’s reality. Speeds measure up to 100 Mbps, although some only get half that. Upstream is usually 10-40 Mbps. Caps haven’t been specified but will almost certainly be higher than current satellite offerings. By most standards, the performance is decent. A Redditer posts Starlink is 600x better…

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Need to know: Real 5G speeds and spectrum (3 minute read)

Takeaway: 95+% of 5G is lowband (< 1800 MHz or mid-band (2500-4200 MHz.) Asia, TMobile US, and much of Europe is mid-band.80-200 MHz of spectrum usually delivers 100-400 Mbps. Low-band (AT&T, much of DT & other European, runs at 4G speeds and sometimes lower. See AT&T data below.Millimeter wave often does 500 Mbps and…

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Need to Know: 5G Spectrum – Think mid-band

Takeway: Decent 5G until around 2025 will be mostly mid-band, 2500-4200 MHz. Frequencies lower than 2100 MHz essentially deliver 4G capacity. Millimeter wave, 20 GHz and above, can deliver gigabits but will be rare until the middle of the decade or later. It’s expensive, and the carriers don’t see much market. Heretical but true:…

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Open RAN Experts: Not quite ready for prime time

Open RAN works, but the strongest supporters are clear it has a way to go. CTO Tareq Amin of Rakuten, with the most advanced deployment in the world, had to spend “hundreds of millions” on custom chips to get the performance he needs. My unofficial numbers are custom chip cost wiped out all the…

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Primary: Cost per bit of wireless is falling at a ferocious rate

Even experts are skeptical that Verizon’s cost per bit is falling at 40-50% per year, but I’ve confirmed it to my satisfaction. Three well-established datapoints: Traffic was growing at 60-80% per year and only now is growth falling below 40% Capex has been flat to down Speeds have been going up consistently and congestion…

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