Datacomm research predicts the market for wireless MAN will reach more than $5B by 2007, thanks to 3G backhaul, metro Ethernet and wireless DSL

December 18, 2003

2 Min Read

CHESTERFIELD, Mo., Dec. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Thanks to exploding demand for 3G backhaul, metro Ethernet, and wireless DSL services, worldwide sales of wireless MAN equipment will surge to more than $5 billion per year by 2007. That is one of the conclusions of the new 84-page report, Wireless Metropolitan Area Networks: Opportunities and Illusions, released today by Datacomm Research Company.

"The growing need for high-speed communications between fixed locations combined with rapidly evolving technology will breathe new life into the wireless MAN industry," said Ira Brodsky, President of Datacomm Research and the report's author. "However, vendors must stay focused on customers and applications -- and not succumb to unrealistic expectations spurred by committee-designed standards," he added.

Additional conclusions found in Wireless Metropolitan Area Networks: Opportunities and Illusions:

  • The construction of 3G mobile phone networks, combined with the migration of subscribers to 3G, will be the single biggest driver of wireless MAN market growth. Throughput hungry applications such as 'picture mail', streaming TV, and downloadable games demand significantly greater backhaul capacity.

  • The second largest wireless MAN application is "metro Ethernet": interconnecting LANs in different buildings. High-speed wireless MANs capable of near-line-of-sight (near-LOS) and non-line-of-sight (non-LOS) operation will significantly increase wireless' share of this market.

  • Wireless MANs are providing the equivalent of DSL and cable modem services in rural areas, developing countries, and underserved urban areas. Though wireless can deliver competitive service at competitive prices, there is no evidence wireless will win in cable modem/DSL service strongholds.

  • Qualcomm's data-only version of CDMA2000 -- CDMA2000 1xEV DO -- is gaining market traction. TD-CDMA, as promoted by IPWireless, will serve as a data-only complement to W-CDMA. There are opportunities for both standalone and network overlay solutions.

  • Intel's participation in the wireless MAN industry is a major 'wildcard' factor. Intel has integrated Wi-Fi functionality in its Centrino mobile computing chipset. Now Intel is touting WiMax as the metropolitan area version of Wi-Fi. Companies offering "cellular Wi-Fi" solutions beg to differ.

Datacomm Research Co.

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