Market researcher ABI Research has released a new study that points to continued enthusiasm for LTE deployment.
Coming on the heels of a turbulent week for WiMAX
(see: Intel's $950 million investment write-down and Nokia ceasing production of its only WiMAX device) it's a positive sign indeed for this 4G technology.
Now before we get carried away with the premature burial of WiMAX, it's important to note that Clearwire did light up a new city this week (Portland, OR) and has plans to start service in up to nine other cities in 2009. Let's wait before we get out the shovels.
Still ABI's report Long Term Evolution (LTE)
draws attention to the fact that Verizon, (possibly sensing some blood in the water?) has reportedly moved up their LTE deployment plans by a year, from 2010 to 2009.
ABI notes that globally, 18 operators have announced LTE rollout plans.
Writing in the recent report, ABI Research senior analyst Nadine Manjaro said,
ABI Research believes that NTT will also deploy LTE in Japan in 2009. We forecast that by 2013 operators will spend over $8.6 billion on LTE base station infrastructure alone. For operators that have already deployed 3G networks, LTE will be a key CAPEX driver over the next five years.
Manjaro also notes that LTE application development could be a major driver of investment as operators explore which services to deploy.
As an example, Manjaro looks to Sprint and Verizon and their plans to provide third-party access to their GPS data.
The resulting new applications will tie mobility and presence aspects together to create more compelling services than in the past. This is significant because it represents the beginning of a new generation of application development which will leverage the vast amounts of data in operators' networks.
Carriers looking to deploy 4G technology face the same financial difficulties as the rest of us. However one cannot lose sight of the fact that on the other side of this financial mess, one might imagine a new period of growth. Companies that make investments in technology today might not see an immediate return however, they should take solace that the evolution to broadband wireless is going to happen sooner or later.
To learn more about the opportunities in the emerging 4G space, consider the 4GWE Conference
, which is taking place in Miami Beach this February 2-4.
The show will feature keynotes from Intel and Qualcomm as well as over 50 speakers from companies such as Fujitsu, Google, Dialogic, IBM, SkyTerra and others.
The conference promises to deliver an unmatched educational experience. 4GWE Attendees will learn:
· How the history and evolution of the cellular network will in part determine the evolution to 4G
· The major differences between the competing technologies of WiMAX and LTE
· The killer applications for both the consumer and business customer
· How 4G will effect social networking applications
· How 4G will significantly change content distribution
· Where venture money will be spent
· What mobile devices will be developed to support 4G