Mobile Broadband Card Sales Brisk

The market is being driven by wholesale shifts to HSPA and EV-DO, report says.
The growing demand for netbooks and advanced smartphones drove the mobile broadband card market to a 10% growth in the first half of 2009 and promises to push the market for mobile broadband cards to $8.4 billion worldwide by 2013, according to an Infonetics Research report.

The market research firm predicted also that the number of mobile broadband subscribers will reach nearly 1 billion by 2013. The main thrust of the growth is occurring in countries whose economies are still emerging, such as Brazil, Russia, China, and India, where initial embrace of mobile phones is for voice capability but consumers also get 3G broadband in the process of seeking voice service.

"Huawei leads revenue market share in the fast-growing mobile broadband card market," said Richard Webb, Infonetics' directing analyst for WiMax, microwave, and mobile devices, in a statement. "Several other vendors are doing well in this market as well, including Sierra Wireless, ZTE, Novatel, Sony-Ericsson, and Option." Webb added that Huawei and ZTE are performing particularly well in those emerging markets.

The market is being driven by wholesale shifts to HSPA and EV-DO, Infonetics noted, adding that EV-DO has been deploying earlier than GSM whose operators are generally just beginning to upgrade from WCDMA to HSPA networks. The result is that EV-DO service providers are currently pacing the broadband mobile market, but since GSM dominates the world's networks, HSPA/WCDMA will take over the lead in the near future.

"Between 2009 and 2013," Infonetics said, "worldwide service provider revenue from mobile broadband services is forecast to more than double." The market research firm is also predicting that LTE infrastructure market revenue will reach $5 billion in 2013.

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