Developing telecommunications frameworkLatin America’s underlying structure for smart cities development in the region continues to make progress despite having smaller smart city expenditures when compared to China and Japan, for example. Nevertheless, Internet access is one of the most important conditions enabling the development of smart cities. In 2022, the number of mobile internet users in Latin America was estimated at 383 million, accounting for more than half of the region’s population. Meanwhile, between 2019 and 2025, the number of internet of things (IoT) connections in Latin America is expected to increase by nearly 150 percent, with the sector of smart homes accounting for the largest number of new connections.
Currently, 85 percent of respondents in Latin America believed that the deployment of 5G technology in the region will help bridge the digital divide by providing connectivity to more citizens. Already in 2022 there have been 130 million 5G-enabled smartphone shipments in Latin America, up from just three million in 2020. By 2025, half of Latin America’s 5G mobile connections will be concentrated in Brazil, Mexico and Chile.