Non-service provider verticals buying more optical equipment

APRIL 24, 2009 -- Infonetics Research says $1 of every $7 spent on optical equipment is by verticals other than service providers.

APRIL 24, 2009--Communications market research firm Infonetics Research (search Lightwave for Infonetics) recently released its "Optical Network Hardware by Vertical Market" report. Highlights from the market research report follow.

"It is no surprise that service providers purchase the lion's share of optical gear and use all types of optical network equipment, purchasing much of long-haul gear, and a majority of the SONET/SDH gear. However, non-service provider verticals represent about $1 of every $7 invested in optical equipment. Much of this equipment supports storage extension of some sort, even though many nonmilitary, nonsecurity government bodies are building local, regional, or national networks to interconnect a large number of sites to central data," says Michael Howard, Infonetics Research's cofounder and principal analyst for optical, routing, switching, and Ethernet.

Andrew Schmitt, Infonetics Research's new directing analyst for optical, adds, "The largest operators command the largest share of optical network equipment spending by far, with competitive telcos the next largest market; together these two verticals account for about 90% of all service-provider optical hardware purchases. Incumbents and mobile operators will continue to acquire competitors, as well as out of territory incumbents and mobile operators, and will grow into a larger slice of the pie. Cable operators are a larger opportunity in North America than anywhere else in the world. Internet content providers, such as Google, Yahoo, and MSN, represent an exciting, small but growing segment."

According to the report:

  • Worldwide sales of optical network hardware hit $15.5 billion in 2008 and are expected to grow to $17.2 billion in 2013
  • Service provider investment in optical network equipment is driven by IP network transformation, business capacity and service upgrades, residential triple play, and mobile backhaul
  • Non-service provider verticals as a whole are buying more optical equipment, both in the long haul and the metro, driven mostly by high capacity, highly available storage extension, data center interconnection for businesses, and secure transmission
  • Metro WDM optical equipment is a fast-growing area of investment for non-service provider verticals, especially finance and government
  • Top optical vendors: Alcatel-Lucent, Huawei, Nortel, Nokia Siemens Networks, Fujitsu, Ericsson, NEC

Infonetics' optical hardware by vertical report provides worldwide and regional market size, forecasts, and analysis for 12 vertical markets, split by metro WDM, metro SONET/SDH, long-haul WDM, and long-haul SONET/SDH optical equipment.

Vertical markets tracked include four service provider verticals (incumbent telco and mobile operators, competitive telcos, cable operators/MSOs, ICPs), and eight non-service provider verticals (education and research, government, finance, health care, media and entertainment, transportation, utilities, and other).

Markets are tracked in North America, Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA), Asia Pacific, and Central and Latin America (CALA), and totaled for worldwide.

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