By 2015, there will be more than 300 million subscribers on long term evolution (LTE) mobile broadband networks, according to a new white paper from Juniper Research.
LTE Improves 3GPP Capacity
LTE is a global mobile broadband standard whose overall aim is to improve the overall capacity of the 3GPP system to handle increasing volumes of data traffic during the next 10 years. The system needs to continuously evolve to remain competitive with other mobile broadband systems in cost and performance. LTE is the next development stage of 3GPP radio access interfaces.
Developed World Represents Most Short-term LTE Growth
As mentioned above, Juniper predicts the global LTE subscriber base will exceed 300 million by 2015. Combined, Western Europe, North America and the Far East and China will represent 90% of LTE subscribers in 2015.
Western Europe will represent the largest LTE market share, with North America and Far East/China having roughly equal shares of the market. The concentration of users in developed countries will result in LTE penetration of one in 20 subscribers by 2015.
In the remaining 10% of the global LTE market, countries with a higher gross domestic product (GDP) are expected to drive LTE in other regions. LTE is expected to be a premium-level service in these regions, initially in the main business metro areas and for capacity relief.
In the long term, Juniper suggests mobile operators could use LTE as the foundation for fourth-generation (4G) networks.
New Entrants Poised to Join Smartphone Market
One impetus for adoption of LTE mobile broadband networks is the expected influx of players into the global smartphone market between 2010 and 2015, according to other recent Juniper Research data. New smartphone market entrants (such as Dell, Acer and Huawei), which have virtually no presence in the current smartphone market, will account for a much larger share of the total market, forecast to encompass more than 26 million shipments.
Other providers, such as Google, which also currently have almost no presence, will represent roughly the same marketshare in 2015. A smaller, but still substantial, majority of the market will be taken by closed OS manufacturers such as Apple and RIM.