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2009 will not be a big year for LTE

23 января 2009

Network equipment maker Andrew on Thursday said that LTE will not be a major priority for operators in 2009.

The vendor said that a number of operators are yet to see significant enough traffic on their 3G networks to warrant investing in LTE, while capacity issues currently experienced by other telcos can be tackled with other solutions.

"LTE is not even in the picture for some operators who right now aren't seeing a significant load on their UMTS networks," said Andrea Casini, EMEA vice president of sales and marketing at Andrew.

He told Total Telecom that Andrew expects LTE deployments in some markets before the end 2009, with broad rollouts beginning in 2010 and 2011.

"A handful of operators are pursuing LTE trials at the moment... [while] some are waiting for others to burn their fingers," he said.

"Right now it's hard to convince people to adopt a new technology when their current equipment is yet to generate significant revenues," he commented.

Casini explained that unlike 2G technologies like GSM and GPRS, which are mainly used for voice and data respectively, 3G and 4G technologies will find different uses in different markets.

"At the moment some operators are using UMTS for data while others are using it to offload their voice traffic, and something similar will take place with LTE," he said.

Still, Casini said for competitive reasons, it is necessary for the likes of Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks to drive the progress of LTE.

"With players like Huawei and ZTE coming over and offering good equipment for the lowest prices, the only way the guys up north can differentiate is to lead the way on LTE," he said.

Meanwhile Casini also said he doesn't expect the global recession to have much impact on the progression to LTE during 2009.

"LTE is not going to be a big item for operators in 2009 anyway. The cost will be marginal in most companies' overall expenses," he said.

"[The downturn] may delay spending, but there is always catch-up spending that follows after that," added Rick Aspan, director of corporate communications at CommScope, which acquired Andrew in 2007.

"Network utilisation doesn't go down and neither can investment because you end up falling behind what your customers' needs are," he said.

"You will find that some new projects get reconsidered, but other than this the recession isn't impacting much on anything we cover," added Casini.

Источник: Total Telecom

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