ABI Research (www.abirsearch.com) has found that the overall 2012 wireless network equipment market was quite challenging for infrastructure vendors, but the incessant demand for 3G and 4G mobile broadband will continue to drive demand for mobile packet core equipment. The Mobile Packet Data Core Network infrastructure market will reach $1.8B in 2013.
“Continued growth in 3G and 4G traffic will propel the Mobile Packet Core Infrastructure to a cumulative $10B market over the next five years,” says Joe Hoffman, principal analyst at ABI Research.
The overall mobile core network equipment market declined 12% in Q1 2013 from the rather moribund Q4 2012. Reflecting increased data demand, the packet data core market continues to expand and is up 22% over Q4 2012, and up 30% over the trailing 12 months. In North America the hugely popular success of LTE is rapidly supplanting 2G and 3G traffic and eliminating capacity expansion needs for those technologies. Other parts of the world exhibit similar conditions, with packet core network equipment most in demand.
Market share includes the totality of a vendor’s core network business, giving an overall market strength, and much of today’s core network equipment supports 2G, 3G and 4G with only a software change. Huawei gained a few points of market share relative to the rest of the industry in Q1 2013.
“Ericsson remains the leader in overall core network market share, and while they retain that position, there will be increasing pressure from Huawei and others as the market trends to 4G,” says Hoffman.