Huawei and ZTE, despite tight geopolitical squeezes, are more than holding their own when it comes to shares of worldwide telecom equipment revenue.
According to estimates from analyst firm Dell'Oro, the two Chinese suppliers gained about three percentage points of revenue share when comparing 2019 with the first nine months of 2020. The creditable performance was helped by "investments in China outpacing the overall market." Huawei and ZTE together, calculated Dell'Oro, accounted for more than 40% of the global telecom equipment market during the nine-month period ended September 30.
Table 1: Top seven suppliers and their market shares
|Year 2019||Q120 to Q320|
The upshot is that Huawei has cemented its pole position in Dell'Oro's ranking of the world's top seven suppliers by revenue, while ZTE has tightened its grip on fourth place.
Ericsson has no doubt been boosted by China also, after bagging some lucrative 5G deals there, but it was not enough to improve upon its revenue market share, which remained steady at 14%.
The growing importance of connectivity, noted Dell'Oro, helped the equipment market expand in Q2 and Q3 after a 4% year-on-year decline in Q1. Strong technology performers were optical transport and multiple wireless segments, including 5G RAN, 5G core and microwave mobile backhaul.
Underlining what seems to be a Q3 bounce-back, preliminary Dell'Oro estimates suggest that the overall telecom equipment market – broadband access, microwave and optical transport, mobile core and RAN, SP router and carrier ethernet switch – advanced 9% year-over-year during 3Q20.
During the 1Q20-3Q20 period, however, the market increased by a more modest 5%. Dell'Oro added that it had not made any material changes to the overall outlook and projects the total telecom equipment market to advance 5% to 6% in 2020, and 3% to 4% in 2021. Total telecom equipment revenues are projected to approach between $90 billion and $95 billion in 2021.
— Ken Wieland, contributing editor, special to Light Reading