Last year was tough for broadband equipment sales says Ovum

Ovum says that broadband access equipment sales fell 23% in 2013. However, the market research firm believes this year won’t be quite so bad.

Ovum says that broadband access equipment sales fell 23% in 2013. However, the market research firm believes this year won’t be quite so bad.

Sales of wireline broadband access equipment in 2013 came in at $5.42 billion, Ovum reports. DSL equipment revenues declined worse than the market overall, 28%, as the increased interest in VDSL couldn’t offset waning ADSL sales. PON equipment revenues weren’t much better, shrinking 24% thanks to a lack of major new fiber to the home (FTTH) projects.

Not all companies fared as poorly as the market, however. Ovum reports that Alcatel-Lucent led market share gainers, followed by Cisco and ADTRAN. ZTE suffered the most in terms of lost market share in 2013, while Huawei maintained the top spot with 28% share.

“2013 was a tough year for wireline broadband access equipment vendors,” summarized Julie Kunstler, a principal analyst at Ovum. “We are cautiously optimistic that the large revenue declines will not repeat in 2014. While pricing pressures will continue, we expect strong shipments in vectoring ready VDSL, PON ONTs/ONUs, and CMTS.

VDSL shipments will remain strong in North American and Western Europe this year, Ovum predicts. VDSL2 vectoring trials will continue throughout the year as well as commercial availability increases.

On the optical access end of things, ONT/ONU shipments should remain strong in 2014. Gigabit FTTH networks are growing in mindshare and deployments, Ovum notes. However, OLT port shipments will not grow without a significant new FTTH PON deployment, according to the market research firm.

With this factor in mind, PON vendors have begun to look for other uses for their equipment, Ovum notes. Passive optical LAN applications have become a focus (see, for example, “Technology and business drivers for passive optical LANs”), as has the use of PON systems for mobile backhaul. Success in this latter effort could spur interest in next-gen PON technology, Ovum notes.

Finally, CMTS shipments should remain steady in 2014, although Ovum notes the pending Comcast acquisition of Time Warner remains a wild card.

For more information on FTTx equipment and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.




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