Global femtocell revenues to hit $4bn by 2014 – analyst

Dell’Oro sees 62 million unit shipments by same date, higher than previous predictions.
Revenues generated by femtocell deployments worldwide will reach $4 billion by 2014, with the EMEA region leading the way, analyst firm Dell’Oro Group predicted on Wednesday.

Promoting a new report on the femto market, Dell’Oro noted that while it is still early days for the technology, there will be a significant increase in commercial deployments next year, with an inflection point coming in 2012.

“While only one million [femtocell] units are expected to ship this year, we forecast unit shipments will reach 62 million in 2014,” said Loren Shalinsky, senior analyst at Dell’Oro Group, in a statement.

That figure is significantly higher than the 49 million units Informa Telecoms and Media forecasts by the same date. Informa TM made that prediction in February.

Shalinsky added that more than 80% of the 2014 unit shipments will be WCDMA femtocells.

Growth in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region will help keep that WCDMA percentage high.

North America currently leads the market, mainly thanks to the fact that its three largest mobile operators have all launched commercial femtocell offerings. That position will remain unchanged in 2010, with North America reporting the highest shipment volumes in the world. However, EMEA will take over by 2014, boosted by a number of deployments expected to take place in 2012.

There are currently 14 commercial femtocell deployments globally, according to Dell’Oro. Many operators are running trials though, with the majority of those triallists going for commercial launches in 2012.

Recent comments made by the world’s mobile operators back up Dell’Oro’s growth predictions.

AT&T recently completed its nationwide femtocell deployment in the U.S. and is now looking to extend its offering into the enterprise space.

Meanwhile in Japan, a commercial rollout from NTT DoCoMo spurred KDDI and Softbank into action, while DoCoMo itself is already looking at the next generation of the technology.

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