IHS: Sluggish worldwide macrocell market rings up $10B in Q1

Nokia led a worldwide infrastructure market that was sluggish in all but a few regions, according to fresh data from IHS.

The market research firm estimated the global macrocell mobile infrastructure market rang up $10 billion in revenue during the first quarter, down 18 percent sequentially and 8 percent year over year. The space was "dragged by all regions except for a few strong spots like Japan, North America and Mexico," IHS said in a research note plugging its latest quarterly infrastructure report.

IHS described the market as having entered "the post Long Term Evolution peak era," with LTE spending down 23 percent sequentially and 6 percent year over year.

Nokia, which announced plans in April to cut thousands of jobs globally as part of an effort to save more than $1 billion in the wake of its acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent, dominated the LTE infrastructure segment with a 32 percent worldwide share. Huawei trailed with a 22 percent market share, followed by Ericsson (18 percent), ZTE (12 percent) and Samsung (8 percent).

"Revenue for software that goes with 2G, 3G and 4G networks grew 17 percent in 2015 over the prior year to top $15.2 billion, mostly driven by LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) upgrades," IHS reported. "Ericsson was once again the king of the macro 2G/3G/4G radio in Q1 2016, sustained by its mix of geographically distributed large tier-one accounts. Huawei remained number two, followed closely by Nokia (including Alcatel-Lucent's share). In this weak quarter, the combination of Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent propelled the new Nokia into the LTE market driver's seat, ahead of Huawei."

IHS also said "the long tail of the 2G/3G end-of-life cycle" continued in the first quarter as revenue dipped 12 percent sequentially, due primarily to strong demand for W-CDMA in Japan. The company also predicted software for 2G, 3G and 4G networks will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 9 percent from 2015 to 2020, topping $23 billion at the end of that span.

For more:
- see this IHS web page

Related articles:
IHS: Ericsson leads $13B LTE infrastructure market, but the growth is over
Report: LTE infrastructure spending to peak at $23.3B in 2015, then start declining
Sprint gets OK from SoftBank to move ahead on network densification plan
Tower companies see lower Q1 network spending from Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile - with Sprint as the wild card
Alcatel-Lucent overcomes sluggish U.S. carrier spending in Q1, bumps up sales and margins
Ericsson warns North American market will 'remain slow in the short term'
Nokia sees 47% jump in N. American networks sales in Q1, but profit jitters worry investors