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The business of wimax - Pareek D.

Pareek D. The business of wimax - Wiley publishing , 2006. - 330 p.
ISBN-10 0-470-02691
Download (direct link): thebusinessof2006.pdf
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Base station costs are more complex owing to the variety of types and scale. However, base stations are less of a factor in the economic equation for operator deployments. Industry analysts believe that the WiMAX market will be worth anywhere from $3 billion upwards by 2009, and a $3.4 billion annual opportunity for fixed and portable wireless broadband equipment is foreseen by 2010. The 3.5 GHz band will account for 50% of that multibillion dollar market by the end of the decade (Figure 9.10).
Fixed Market Trends
The fixed/portable broadband wireless equipment market (sub-11 GHz) has grown from a $430 million market to a $562 million one - a 30% increase - and is predicted to pass the $ 2 billion mark by 2010. By 2009 there will be 7.2 million subscribers of fixed WiMAX (Figure 9.11).
Subscribers (millions)
12, 10-8-
Middle East/Africa fl Asia I Europe  Americas
0 HI , 0-
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 200Ý
Figure 9.10 Worldwide 802.16a and proprietary <11 GHz subscribers and equipment revenue
Subscribers (millions) 16
10 -
14 -
12 •
2 -
8 -
4 -
6 -
Figure 9.11 Worldwide mobile WiMAX subscribers
Mobility Market Trends
The largest markets for wireless broadband will be for mobile applications. Mobile broadband is being developed from two opposing directions: from the WiMAX side, systems will become increasingly mobile as unification takes place under the 802.16 standard. From the cellular mobile side, systems are being driven to deliver voice, rich media and broadband data over an IP network. Both streams of development eventually will deliver similar data rates. However, currently cellular phone/data network sales greatly exceed BWA in terms of both unit numbers and revenues.
The trend for WiMAX systems starts with the first stage of fixed-nomadic CPEs with systems expected to become WiMAX Certified starting in mid-2005. The second stage of WiMAX systems based on 802.16e will provide greater nomadic ability followed by PCMCIA-enabled laptop mobility (Figure 9.12).
Industry Players
The BWA industry structure is changing rapidly. Several established companies are leaving and new companies are entering the industry. Telecom equipment giants like Nortel, Agere, Marconi and Lucent have all exited the fixed wireless business.
New companies like Alvarion, Airspan and Proxim have entered the industry. They are significant players in developing the new WiMAX
Figure 9.12 Top telecommunication vendors’ revenue 2004
standards. As the market grows, the number of vendors is also expected to increase.
Today there are numerous small BWA vendors. To be able to survive they will have to find profitable niches or be acquired. Otherwise, they will eventually die. The market is entering a period of transition and it is expected that the industry will mature from its current niche position and move towards consolidation. WiMAX has split the vendor community into two not-so-evenly divided camps. Because BWA vendors see such dramatic (and painful) changes coming, many are lining up against WiMAX: one can expect the chorus to grow louder and nastier in the months ahead. WiMAX adds value for every stakeholder in the BWA industry (Figure 9.13).
Figure 9.13 BWA value chain
• Component makers - WiMAX creates a volume opportunity for silicon suppliers.
• Equipment makers - there is longer any need to develop every piece of the end-to-end solution. Businesses can innovate more rapidly.
• Operators - standards-based equipment means more cost-effective CPEs. Multiple equipment suppliers and lower costs = lower investment risk, quick provision of E1+ level and ‘on demand’ high-margin broadband. WiMAX is scalable, enables remote management and supports differentiated service levels.
• Consumers - there is more choice of broadband access and support for voice, data and video.
Service Providers
WiMAX is anyone’s game. WiMAX blurs the line between fixed and mobile service; as such, it has attracted the attention of both fixed and mobile providers.
Fixed providers tend to embrace wireless broadband as a means of extending their network into rural areas as well as stemming the flow from their enterprise T1 clients. Mobile providers look at wireless broadband as a way to gain enterprise clients and increase the revenue per user. Mobile providers also have the infrastructure upon which to overlay WiMAX networks.
Finally, there are the WISPs. These companies tend to be small and operate in the unlicensed bands. We expect a wave of consolidation to begin as the larger WISPs seek to expand their networks and major carriers seek new revenue opportunities.
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