LTE and the Road to 4G 2010-2015

in Report, Research and Markets, LTE, WiMAX

With the soaring adoption of data services by mobile subscribers using handsets and laptops, data traffic has skyrocketed and 3G utilisation rates are fast-approaching threshold levels and threatening the user experience.

3G and 3.5G networks are increasingly proving incapable of handling data traffic, especially in urban areas and places with a high smartphone density. Facing a need for near constant enhancement of data transfer rates and mobile broadband network efficiency, MNOs are consequently planning to move to 4G technologies to accommodate the surge in data traffic and turn this challenge into an opportunity.

Long Term Evolution (LTE) and Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (WiMAX) are the main pathways to 4G that MNOs have to pick between, and on which they can build their data handling capacities. While WiMAX has enjoyed a first mover advantage and a clear head-start, LTE’s benefits – not least that LTE is a natural progression for MNOs operating on GSM/UMTS networks, and offers the ability to lower the cost of delivering data services – are expected to drive a surge in LTE network deployments in the coming years.

The period 2009-2010 has already seen the announcement of numerous LTE trials and deployments the world-over, and both this ever-growing number of contracts, and the major MNOs involved who are favouring LTE over alternative technologies, strongly suggest that LTE deployment is gaining substantial momentum.

In the following eight fact-filled chapters, this new study covers the current and future state of LTE at worldwide and regional levels:

- Introduction

- Worldwide Mobile Market

- Technology Status

- LTE Market Status

- LTE Network Vendor Landscape

- Industry Opinion

- Conclusion

- Appendices (including full glossary of terms)

Based on our forecasts, the worldwide LTE subscriber base is expected to grow at a phenomenal CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 187.7 percent between 2010 and 2015.

This growth will see the worldwide LTE subscriber base pass the 200 million-mark by end-2015 – within the first six years of its launch in late 2009; whereas the worldwide 3G subscriber base reached only the 100 million mark in the first six years after its launch.

Migrating to LTE technology is not just the preserve of the developed and saturated markets in North America and Western Europe, with MNOs in developing markets also proactively doing the same; though understandably LTE’s scale and use will markedly vary between markets.

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