Samsung won two LTE infrastructure contracts with U.S. carriers, a senior executive said, bolstering the company's contention that it can expand its dominance in handsets to the network equipment market as well.
I.P. Hong, head of marketing for Samsung's telecommunications business, told Bloomberg that the company won contracts from one "top" U.S. carrier and another "mid"-tier operator, but did not disclose the carriers. He said an official announcement on the deals will be made in May.
Samsung, better known around the world as the second-largest handset and smartphone maker, hopes to become one of the top three network equipment vendors by 2015. Right now it is not ranked in the top five by market share, trailing Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), Huawei, Alcatel-Lucent (NASDAQ:ALU), Nokia Siemens Networks and ZTE. However, Samsung is betting that expanding sales of LTE equipment will help catapult it to the top of the industry. According to research firm Dell'Oro Group, the LTE equipment market could grow 45 percent annually over the next five years.
Samsung is no stranger to the U.S. equipment market, and for a long time was a leading WiMAX equipment supplier. However, as WiMAX's influence has waned, the company shifted its focus to LTE. Samsung, along with Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent, won a $5 billion contract from Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) for Sprint's Network Vision network modernization plan, which is centered around multi-mode base stations that will allow Sprint to deploy LTE. Samsung has also served as an LTE vendor for MetroPCS' (NASDAQ:PCS) LTE network and was chosen by C Spire as its primary LTE network vendor, though C Spire has delayed its LTE service launch.
- see this Bloomberg article
Sprint selects network project vendors, will start shutting down iDEN in 2013
MetroPCS selects Ericsson, Samsung as LTE vendors
Samsung aims to displace Huawei in infrastructure market by 2015
Huawei makes a stand with $6 billion worth of U.S. supply orders
Fresh research forecasts LTE spending surge