Since the issuance of 5g commercial license by the Ministry of industry and information technology, China’s 5g commercial promotion has been completed for one year. Under the orderly promotion and deployment of China’s 5g “new infrastructure” in 2020, nearly 700000 5g base stations have been built in China as of November, realizing 5g coverage in domestic cities above prefecture level, providing necessary support and driving environment for the development of terminal industry. At present, the number of terminal connections in China has exceeded 180 million. As the opening year of China’s “14th five year plan”, 2021 will vigorously promote the development of 5g new infrastructure. 5g terminal is a bridge connecting network infrastructure and industrial applications, and the innovative development of terminal industry is the key to 5g large-scale commerce. Looking forward to 2021, the ecological layout of 5g terminals will blossom, and the proportion of commercial terminals will increase; 5g mobile phone penetration continued to improve and the brand pattern continued to consolidate; The strong demand for 5g chip in terminal drives the accelerated breakthrough of technology; 5g promotion and application in key vertical industries will continue.
Basic judgment on the situation in 2021
（1） The ecological layout of 5g terminals is flourishing, and the proportion of commercial terminals is increasing
As the key platform and control center of 5g application, 5g terminal provides a physical basis for the integration of traditional terminal equipment and emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence. In addition to traditional terminal types such as smart phones, indoor and outdoor CPE, modules, hotspots and adapters, 5g terminals will be added in 2020, including robots, televisions, notebooks, industrial CPE, on-board routers / hotspots, on-board units, cameras and encoders. According to GSA related data, in January 2020, the number of 5g terminal forms released worldwide exceeded 200 for the first time. By the end of September, the number of terminal forms had reached 444, and it was clear that the number of commercial terminals had reached 222. The proportion of commercial terminal types has been increasing over the past year. Benefiting from the priority deployment of global 5g medium band network infrastructure, it has been announced that more than 90% of 5g terminals support sub-6ghz and 18.9% support millimeter wave communication.
Looking forward to 2021, the pattern of 5g terminal ecology will be further strengthened, and the application terminal forms of 5g robot, industrial CPE, vehicle module and other industries will continue to innovate and emerge, and continue to expand the extension of 5g terminal. With the deployment of sub-6ghz 5g network infrastructure and the improvement and promotion of millimeter wave band facilities and technologies, the types of terminals supporting millimeter wave communication will rise, and the 5g full scene terminal ecology will be further improved.
（2） 5g mobile phone penetration accelerated and the brand pattern continued to consolidate
In 2020, mobile phone types accounted for about 45% of 5g terminals released, accounting for nearly half of the country, which is the focus of 5g terminal manufacturers’ layout. With the continuous promotion of 5g new infrastructure, the overall shipment of 5g mobile phones in China is on the rise. Affected by mobile phone mobile phone market in early 2020, the overall shipments of the smartphone market have dropped significantly. With the steady progress of resumption of production and production, as of October 2020, the total number of 5G mobile phones shipped in the domestic market exceeded 120 million, and the new models of the mobile phone accumulated 183. From October 2020, the 5G mobile phone shipments accounted for more than 60% consecutive months. In terms of market pattern, China’s 5g mobile phone terminal market has gradually matured, and the 5g mobile phone market pattern of “one super and many strong” composed of Huawei, vivo, oppo, Xiaomi and other brands has become stable. The total of the four brands is as high as 97%, and the market concentration has been further improved. In terms of price, the 5g brand mobile phone market of 4000 yuan and above is the main market. Huawei, Samsung, etc. use folding screen 5g mobile phones to layout the high-end flagship market. With the maturity of 5g terminal industry chain, the price of vivo, redmi and other low-end models based on Tianji 1000 + has dropped to about 2000 yuan.
Looking forward to 2021, COVID-19 will effectively accelerate its control and mobile phone replacement. With the effective prevention and control of COVID-19, full recovery and resumption of production, and the wider deployment of 5G new infrastructure, the mobile phone replacement tide will accelerate, and the 5G mobile phone shipments and share will increase further. The Matthew effect of 5g mobile phone terminal market continues to deepen, and brand mobile phone manufacturers will continue to expand their advantages and increase market share; 5g mobile phone brand manufacturers will still compete for the medium and high-end flagship market with advanced technologies such as manufacturing process and folding screen. In terms of low-end 5g models, they will open up the low-end market at a more people-friendly price, and the price may drop to 1500 in exchange for market space with profits.
（3） The strong demand for 5g chip in terminal drives the accelerated breakthrough of technology
In 2020, with the further opening of 5g terminal market, especially the large-scale popularization of 5g smart phones, the market demand for baseband, RF and other chips is huge. In order to overcome the difficulty of integration caused by 5g high power consumption and multi-mode and multi frequency, the terminal baseband chip continues to develop in the direction of high integration SOC chip. At present, the process technology of mobile phone terminal chip is mainly 7Nm. Xiaolong X60, Kirin 9000, exynos1080 and apple A14 adopt 5nm process. TSMC and Samsung highly monopolize the advanced process chip manufacturing market. The 5g high frequency band puts forward strict requirements for the design and manufacture of RF components such as filters and power amplifiers, especially the characteristic requirements of 5g millimeter wave band, and continues to promote the R & D and commercial use of RF components. At present, American and Japanese enterprises such as Broadcom, sijiaxun, qorvo and Murata highly monopolize the RF chip market. In contrast, China’s research in the RF field started late, and most of its products are concentrated in the middle and low-end market of 3G / 4G, benefiting from the top-level design dividends of 5g industry, integrated circuits and other relevant policies. Localization alternatives have emerged in the fields of RF switches, power amplifiers and saw and BAW filters.
Looking forward to 2021, driven by the industrial development policy of central local linkage, the investment layout in the field of terminal core technology will be further deepened, and 5g chip technology breakthrough and industrialization development will promote the industry to move into a high-speed growth stage. The advanced chip manufacturing process will continue to evolve to 3nm / 2nm nodes, and the 5nm process chip is expected to be widely used. The RF chip market pattern is difficult to break in the short term. The research and development of 5g chip semiconductor materials and key components continue to tackle key problems. The industrialization of medium and high-end 5g RF chips in domestic enterprises such as Huawei Hisilicon, Ziguang zhanrui, Xinwei communication, Zhuo Shengwei and ZTE Microelectronics will accelerate.
（4） The promotion and application of 5g in key vertical industries will continue
In 2020, with the accelerated deployment of 5g new infrastructure nationwide and the freezing of 5grel-16 standard for industrial Internet of things urllc in July, the terminal application business will accelerate its extension and expansion to various vertical industries. Typical 5g industry applications such as 5g + 8K live broadcast of the two sessions, 5g + remote diagnosis, new crown anti epidemic, 5g + industrial Internet smart mine have been implemented, and the industry applications around the three application scenarios of 5gembb, urllc and mmtc have been continuously explored and carried out.
Looking forward to 2021, the promotion and application of 5g industries such as major events, medical education, Internet of vehicles and industrial Internet will be carried out in depth. Based on the freezing of embb5grel-15 standards and urllc5grel-16 standards, the rel-17 standards mainly for enhanced backhaul, network slicing, UAV, satellite and Internet of vehicles will be accelerated in 2021, and 5g + Internet of vehicles 5g + telemedicine, 5g + industrial Internet, 5g + smart city and other industrial application scenarios will be fully opened, and the operation mode, business model and market positioning of 5g terminal applications for different industries will be further clarified.
Several problems needing attention
（1） The deployment of 5g new infrastructure scale needs to wait for some time
The large-scale deployment of 5g new infrastructure provides necessary support and driving environment for the development of terminal industry. 5g network infrastructure deployment has shifted from NSA mode to sa mode supporting urllc and mmtc scenarios. It still takes a long time to upgrade the full coverage, high-speed and high-capacity core network and bearer network, with huge investment and construction cost and long return cycle. The energy consumption of 5g base stations is huge. The power consumption of a single station is about 2.5 ~ 3.5 times that of a 4G single station, and the coverage area of 5g base stations is far less than that of 4G base stations. According to the estimation of three times the number of 4G base stations, the power consumption of 5g base stations will reach 9 times that of 4G. Telecom operators are facing the dual pressure of current network power source, supporting equipment expansion and high electricity charges to promote network infrastructure deployment and power distribution operation.
（2） Key core chip and component technologies need to be tackled continuously
At present, China’s 5g chip industrialization is not mature. The semiconductor material preparation at the upstream of the industrial chain is subject to developed countries, and the advanced chip manufacturing process is backward as a whole. In particular, the decoupling of science and technology between China and the United States increases the threat to the development of China’s 5g terminal industrial chain. In 2020, SMIC international and ASML’s EUV lithography transaction The OEM cooperation between Huawei and TSMC for advanced process chips was interrupted. Compared with foreign countries, there is a certain gap in the performance and production capacity of 5g medium and high frequency devices in China. At present, the high-speed and high-precision analog-to-digital conversion chip market is monopolized by American giants such as adenault and Texas Instruments, and the bulk acoustic wave filter and power amplifier market is also dominated by American Broadcom and sijiaxun. In 2021, the continuous rise in the commercial scale of 5g terminals will drive a significant increase in the demand for core chips and key components. Key semiconductor materials, advanced process technology and key 5g medium and high frequency devices will become the top priority for China’s industrial chain enterprises to coordinate and tackle key problems.
（3） The number of terminal modules is scarce and the price is high
At present, more than 20 suppliers around the world have provided more than 60 5g modules. According to relevant statistics, the price of 5g terminal modules has dropped to around $100, but it is still close to seven times the price of 4G modules. In addition, according to GSA statistics, 144 5g terminal types have been released all over the world. In addition to nearly half of the smartphone categories, they still include CPE, UAV, TV, notebook, vehicle module and other multi-modal types, of which the number of module forms is 64, and only 11 have been commercially available. The scarcity of terminal module types available is also a reason for their high prices. In 2021, with the expansion of the scale of 5g application field and the increasing enrichment of application scenarios, reducing the price of 5g terminal modules and improving the richness of module types will be the key factors to prosper the terminal ecology.
（4） Industry application innovation support and business exploration still need to be strengthened
At present, the application innovation support capacity of 5g terminal industry is insufficient. The industrial application capacity of integrating 5g, AI, big data and other new generation information technologies is open, the development of common platforms and the construction of relevant testing and certification platforms are in the initial stage. The terminal application standards for education, medical treatment, industrial Internet, Internet of vehicles and other vertical industries are not unified, and the requirements of interconnection, security and privacy cannot be guaranteed. The technical and commercial feasibility needs to be further explored and verified. In terms of application business exploration in the terminal industry, there are many industry-level applications such as 5g + industrial Internet and 5g + ultra-high definition video, but most of them are demonstration applications in vertical industries such as 5g + Internet of vehicles and 5g + smart medical, which have not yet formed sufficient market influence. In 2021, the terminal application innovation support capability based on the three application characteristics of 5g will be accelerated and improved, and the vertical industry scenario landing and commercial application promotion mode need to be explored.
Countermeasures and suggestions to be taken
（1） Steadily promote the deployment of 5g new infrastructure base and give play to the supporting role of the base
Give play to the national top-level design guidance, promote telecom operators to continue to deploy 5g independent networking network, gradually expand the coverage, increase the support for station site land and electricity, coordinate the construction of supporting facilities such as computer room and pipeline, and promote the opening and sharing of social tower resources such as municipal light poles to 5g network facilities. Comprehensively consider the existing spectrum resources and technologies, spectrum characteristics, industrial chain perfection and other factors of operators, improve the industry competitive environment, promote the resource development of high-frequency band and the construction of private network facilities according to the requirements of different industries, and continue to play the role of 5g new infrastructure support to drive the development of terminal industry.
（2） Strengthen the research on 5g key core technologies and continue to promote the standard layout
We will increase support for tackling key basic core technologies, accelerate the iterative upgrading of advanced chip manufacturing processes, focus on promoting the R & D and industrialization of medium and high frequency devices such as filters and power amplifiers, and steadily promote the breaking of the “neck” problem of China’s 5g terminal industry. Continue to increase the innovation and R & D of 5g evolution technology, guide domestic scientific research institutes and related enterprises to strengthen the construction and layout cooperation of patent groups, promote the construction of independent intellectual property protection pool, continue to promote the innovation and R & D of 5g terminal under the iterative upgrading of 5g evolution technology, and continue to improve the competitive advantage of China’s 5g terminal industry.
（3） Build 5g terminal service support capacity and promote collaborative innovation of industrial chain
Encourage qualified enterprises to build common platforms such as application development environment and capacity opening, support the construction of testing and certification platform for 5g terminal system, equipment, service, security and other links, and effectively improve the service support capacity of terminal industry. Gather the innovative resources of “industry, University, research and application”, and promote the cooperation between the upstream and downstream of the terminal industry chain, the communication industry and vertical industries. Relying on the good development opportunities of 5g industry in China, support 5g terminal enterprises to give full play to their advantages, drive the development of core technology enterprises such as semiconductor materials, chip manufacturing, key components and modules by market-oriented means, and create a platform terminal industry ecosystem condensing upstream and downstream.
（4） Promote the innovation and popularization of 5g terminals and accelerate the implementation and promotion of industrial applications
Deeply excavate and explore the TOC end consumer demand and tob end industry application business model, promote the research and development of multi-form and multi-functional 5g terminals integrating AI, VR, ultra-high definition and other new technologies, enrich the terminal innovation, integrate the application product library in multi vertical industries, and accelerate the improvement of 5g terminal equipment performance and application maturity. Deeply summarize and analyze the commercial development experience of 5g demonstration application pilot scheme design, verification, integrated delivery, operation and maintenance and operation widely carried out in China, and accelerate the implementation of 5g industry-level terminals in the fields of medical education, ultra-high definition production and broadcasting, industrial Internet, Internet of vehicles and so on.
Editor in charge: Tzh