Ericsson urges Europe to focus on next-generation network development

27 May 2014 | Kavit Majithia


Ericsson is reportedly planning to disclose information on low returns it made in Europe following high-level R&D investments.

The vendor is planning to showcase how a lack of government investment in next-generation networks is harming the telecoms industry in the continent.

There are concerns that Europe will again be left behind by other regions of the world in the development of next-generation technology and 5G standards.

According to Ericsson’s CTO Ulf Ewaldsson, Europe’s public sector needs to match private-sector expenditure to ensure the growth of telecoms and technology.

“We want to create a bigger agenda for Europe,” he said. “North America is driving LTE and new networks rather than Europe. We can do three or four years ahead but the public sector needs a long-term vision.”

Ericsson has pledged to divulge further information on the lack of returns it has made in Europe.

The company said it spent approximately €2.2 billion of its allotted €3.7 billion R&D budget in Europe, and the region accounts for a fifth of its global sales.

Sales have further decreased from 28% from five years ago. The company said that its voice business is also suffering in Europe, with looser regulation and lower competition in the US generating larger returns for the vendor.

Europe’s telecoms industry has been criticised by leading executives for artificial regulation and maintaining too much competition in the market.

Ericsson announced plans to develop a 5G R&D facility in Sweden earlier this year and it is expected that the company is looking to develop standards for 5G that accommodates machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity.