Dramatic structural changes in mobile communications technology supply, with the demise of vertical integration, is forcing those who are developing standard-essential technologies for 4G and "5G" networks to monetise these efforts through patent licensing, as well as their own product sales.
Infrastructure vendor Ericsson has been strategically moving into new areas like video and M2M through acquisitions--such as its 2013 purchase of Microsoft's Mediaroom TV solution and its 2011 purchase of Telenor Connexion's M2M platform. This M&A activity is part of a carefully crafted plan to help the company transform itself from a hardware company into a software and services firm.
Sony can enjoy greater success as a supplier of smartphone components than a manufacturer in its own right, analysts say.
Airtel is to deploy its first African LTE network in the Republic of Seychelles, and has selected Ericsson as its network partner for the rollout.
Ericsson is partnering with cloud and enterprise powerhouse IBM to jointly research phased-array antenna designs for "5G" networks, though such networks are still being contemplated and have not yet been defined. The companies said they hoped to provide customers with data speeds that are "orders of magnitude faster" than what is available today.
Ericsson, Telstra, and Qualcomm claimed a further milestone in the development of LTE Advanced carrier aggregation technology, by revealing they achieved download speeds on mobile data networks of up to 450 Mbps.
Two former rivals are once again teaming up, with Qualcomm Technologies and Ericsson successfully completing an inter-company interoperability testing of LTE Category 9 connectivity with download speeds of up to 450 Mbps.
Ericsson predicts around 90 per cent of the world's population aged six years and above will have a mobile phone by 2020, by which point smartphone subscriptions are also expected to hit 6.1 billion from 2.7 billion today.
Ericsson expects that by 2020, 90 percent of the world's population over 6 years old will have a mobile phone, and smartphone subscriptions by then are expected to top 6.1 billion.
Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes said that the vendor is "back in the game" in terms of competing with its top rivals and that the company is looking, like other gear makers, for non-carriers customers. After skirting with financial disaster and undergoing a massive restructuring, Combes seemed to be brimming with confidence about Alcatel-Lucent's prospects.