The advent of long term evolution(LTE)-based mobile networks will generate huge revenues for providers and engender a seismic shirt in mobile broadband, which will be marked by dramatically higher connection speeds as well as a host of new services
LTE networks are poised to begin roll out during 2010. Juniper Research forecasts that they will be the catalyst for broadband speeds of up to 100Mb. Furthermore, it claims, that the technology will bring about “a new connected era” for portable games consoles and digital cameras, which will be marked by increasing convergence between the mobile and consumer electronics worlds.
The research company also predicts that demand for LTE mobile broadband will mean that companies offering the service will be well placed to withstand the economic downturn and that within five years the technology will have generated some £48 billion of revenue.
Growth for LTE mobile broadband will be driven by mobile commerce payments and the mobile web. Meanwhile, the areas of the globe where take up will strongest are set to be North America, Western Europe, the Far East and China, which together will likely account for 90 per cent of the market by 2014.
However, Juniper researcher Howard Wilcox, has identified some potential hurdles that will need to surmounted by LTE mobile broadband providers to ensure that they capitalise on the underlying demand.
He commented: “LTE will offer broadband speeds of up to 100 Mb or more: this is at least five times faster than the best mobile broadband now and around 20 times faster than most people experience via fixed DSL. The challenge for mobile operators is how to make profits yet keep prices attractive enough for subscribers to sign up. It’s all about the business case.”
A number of networks are already gone some way towards developing their LTE networks. US operator Verizon Wireless plans to start rolling out LTE 4G mobile broadband network this year, with a view to beating rivals such as AT&T and NTT DoCoMo of Japan.