LTE Technology Expected to Claim Biggest Piece of 2013 Wireless Infrastructure Spending

The largest chunk of next year’s wireless infrastructure capital spending is expected to go to 4G Long Term Evolution, or LTE, wireless technology as mobile carriers make the shift to the up-and-coming standard, said IHS iSuppli.

Worldwide capital spending on LTE technology is expected to nearly triple between 2012 and 2013, with $24.3 billion forecasted for 2013, up from the 2012 projection of $8.7 billion, according to the firm. LTE infrastructure spending in 2015 is expected to jump to $36.1 billion, compared to just $9 billion for 3.5G, the firm added.

“While 3.5G remains the the dominant air interface technology in the mobile infrastructure market, the 4G LTE space has been gaining momentum,” said IHS analyst Jagdish Rebello. He added that the number of mobile network operators worldwide that are trying or using G LTE networks is up to 200 now from 160 in 2010, indicating “widespread support that will drive carrier spending on the LTE to surpass 3.5G by next year.”

LTE offers infrastructure manufacturers and semiconductor suppliers the possibility of strong revenue growth and development of valuable relationships with carriers, according to IHS iSuppli. Rebello said, “The vendors that will win in the transition to 4G will be those that can demonstrate cost-effective, upgradable solutions capable of delivering performance as defined by the LTE specifications.”

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