New data from Juniper Research show that WiMAX 802.16e broadband subscribers will approach 50 million globally by 2014, driven by the need to provide broadband to underserved areas.
The new WiMAX broadband report found that WiMAX will provide easier and more cost effective broadband connectivity in areas where it is logistically challenging and therefore expensive to install wired networks.
Slower growth but opportunities exist
WiMAX 16e has however been faced a number of well publicised delays which have handicapped network operators resulting in slower subscriber growth than anticipated previously. Nonetheless there are examples of successful service providers in a range of countries from Pakistan to the USA.
Report author Howard Wilcox explained: "WiMAX 16e will have opportunities not just in developing countries but also areas of developed countries where the DSL coverage is weak or non-existent. The key for the industry ecosystem now is to overcome the challenges and ensure trials evolve into commercial services quickly."
The report also found that some network operators are targeting specific niches such as high end business broadband, or cable modem customers in addition to DSL metro and rural applications.
Further findings include:
* The highest number of subscribers will be in the Far East & China region largely due to the region’s status as an early adopter.
* Western Europe and, to a lesser extent, North America, are forecast to be driven by DSL churn - broadband provision in underserved areas.
* Africa & Middle East is set to exceed Western Europe with in excess of 15% of the subscriber base in 2014. This region is driven largely by growth of broadband connectivity to underserved and unserved areas rather than faster connections.
Juniper Research provides a balanced assessment of the opportunity for mobile WiMAX. The report features regional forecasts with country detail, identifying broadband and DSL growth, WiMAX market status and use case analysis.