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2013 Outdoor Small Cell Shipments to Almost Double 2012's, Says ABI Research
January 22, 2013
By Rory Lidstone, TMCnet Contributing Writer
ABI Research (News - Alert) recently released a number of new research reports, the most recent of which being its latest "Small Cells and Carrier Wi-Fi" market data report, which states that outdoor small cells will reach half a million units in 2013. This is significant growth over 2012, which saw shipments top out at 278,000 — below ABI's forecast for the year.
According to Nick Marshall, principal analyst at ABI Research, the 2013-2014 timeframe is expected to see "meaningful growth" for outdoor small cells as the first street level small cells start getting deployed. As such, the 1W and below small cell class, which is best suited for street level deployment, will see the highest growth during this period, making up almost two thirds of unit shipments in 2013 and overtaking higher power five-10W microcell shipments in 2014.
Overall, outdoor smart cell units are expected to grow at 52.7 percent CAGR (compound annual growth rate) to reach over 3.5 million units in 2018. Meanwhile, the fastest growing outdoor class of small cells, 4G LTE (News - Alert) small cells, will continue its rapid growth to hit one million shipments in 2018 in response to network operators adding capacity to their networks in key locations.
“The challenges of small cell backhaul, site acquisition, network management, interference mitigation remain, but there is a whole new ecosystem of small cell network design, small cell as a service, installation and commissioning vendors that have emerged in the last 12 months, who are working closely with the local councils, equipment vendors and operators,” said Aditya Kaul, practice director of mobile networks for ABI Research, in a statement.
“The level of discussions and debates around the deployment of outdoor small cells suggests that there is a lot of collective brainpower working hard at getting these deployed cost effectively and swiftly, which gives us confidence that the market is moving in the right direction,” added Kaul.
Also this month, ABI Research released a report entitled, "Centralized vs. Distributed EPC and the Role of SDN and Cloud," which states that virtualization of the EPC will develop into a $400 million market by 2018, as well as its most recent global handset market report.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman
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