WSS sales shrinking so far in 2012 says Infonetics Research

Echoing statements made by manufacturers of wavelength-selective switch (WSS) subsystems in their quarterly financial reports, Infonetics Research says WSS sales have declined 34% year on year in the first half of 2012. The market research firm adds in its newly released ROADM Components report that WSS component revenue as a share of WDM ROADM equipment has fallen to a 5-year low of 6%.

Echoing statements made by manufacturers of wavelength-selective switch (WSS) subsystems in their quarterly financial reports, Infonetics Research says WSS sales have declined 34% year on year in the first half of 2012. The market research firm adds in its newly released ROADM Components report that WSS component revenue as a share of WDM ROADM equipment has fallen to a 5-year low of 6%.

The ROADM Components report covers both the reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexers (ROADM) equipment market and the WSS components within these systems, measured by spacing technology and degree count. Right now, it’s better to be in the ROADM business than in WSS development, according to the report’s author.

"Growth in the overall WDM ROADM equipment market hasn't been stellar, but it has far outstripped the declines seen in ROADM WSS units and revenue," explains Andrew Schmitt, principal analyst for optical at Infonetics Research. "I think we have learned that the WSS market is more cyclical and tied to the ebb and flow of common equipment deployments."

Reflecting this cyclical pattern, Infonetics believes the ROADM WSS component market will expand at a 9.5% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2011 to 2016, despite the current downturn. Future WSS sales will benefit from the rollout of new greenfield coherent 100G networks in 2014, particularly gridless ROADMs designed to support colorless, directionless, and contentionless (CDC) architectures, according to the report.

For more information on wavelength-selective switches and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.


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