A lackluster performance and negative growth that seemed to dog the femtocell market in the first half of 2012 was thankfully not a precursor of what was to come in the second half, as a struggling market showed some signs of revival, according to ABI’s latest research.
ABI research findings indicated that femtocell shipments in the second half more than doubled from the first, and 2012 ended on a slightly more optimistic note with shipments just crossing the two-million mark.
This regaining of momentum suggests the demand for enterprise and consumer femtocells has not really evaporated.
It was seen that enterprise femtocells constituted one-third of the total shipments, while revenue from enterprise femtocells comprised two-thirds of the total revenue for femtocell access points.
Existing top vendors retained their positions in terms of shipments.
The appetite for femtocells was attributed largely to renewals of contracts because of newer versions of access points, and also to inventory levels needing a refresh. The entry of Latin America and Russia are also encouraging signs for the market as it keeps competition alive and triggers demand.
“This is also evident in the continued growth in contracts which have reached a total of 130 globally, as per our estimates,” noted Aditya Kaul, practice director, mobile networks, lending more credibility to the growth trend of the femtocell market.
Kaul rued the fact that femtocells were being used primarily as a means to reduce churn and not as a network quality differentiator. However, competitive markets that brought low-tier operators into the fold would be sufficient to keep the momentum going forward.
ABI research appears to be optimistic and paints a brighter picture for 2013. Can the femtocell market really turn the corner as predicted despite everything? It’s still too early to tell.
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Edited by Braden Becker