The global LTE subscriber base surged nearly 500% in the June quarter, as more commercial networks came online, regular research by Maravedis shows.
By contrast, Wimax subscribers were calculated to have grown just 14% in the quarter, but the research firm still expects the BWA/Wimax subscriber base to reach 28.6 million by the end of next year.
Operators are currently erring towards the FDD variant of LTE, with 20 commercial networks by end-June and a further 177 operators committed to the standard. However, TD-LTE is also on the agenda with 21 carriers trialing the variant during the quarter, while four had trialed both flavors of the 4G technology.
Maravedis predicts that TD-LTE subscriber growth will be driven by Asia Pacific deployments, with China Mobile in particular set to spur customer growth from 2013 onwards.
Analyst Fernando Donoso believes the equipment market is shaping up to be a three horse race between Huawei, Nokia Siemens and Ericsson. “We look to NSN, and particularly Huawei, to improve their standing in the mobile wireless market as they convert LTE contracts into network deployments.”