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Consumers Outpaced by Enterprise in the $4B Femtocell Market

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Enterprise femtocells will capture 97% of the $4.3 billion market revenue in 2019, outpacing consumer residential femtocells, according to the latest forecast from ABI Research.

While femtocells are successful in the consumer market, both operators and vendors are eager for lucrative Enterprise deployments. "The femtocell business model becomes clear for small and medium enterprises. The cost of a Distributed Antenna System cannot be justified for these firms, but yet there is an increasing demand for voice services," says Ahmed Ali, research analyst at ABI Research.

Other sources of revenue driving this transition are value-added services. "Although Enterprise femtocells cost more and deploy in larger numbers, in the long term, device prices are bound to come down. Operators will look for additional customized services to maintain margins," continues Ali. Location-based analytics is one of the most important aspects of future femtocell deployments and provide tailored services for different vertical markets.

The market share of different femtocell access technologies also changes with the rise of multimode femtocells. Although 3G femtocells will have the biggest share of femtocell shipments every year, especially in the North America and Asia-Pacific regions, 3G/4G multimode femtocells are taking off. Top chip and equipment providers pushing towards this approach include Cisco, Alcatel-Lucent, and Broadcom. Multimode femtocell shipments will find its biggest market in North America where the fast growing LTE and small cells markets will benefit from the dual access capabilities.

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Tags: small cells  femtocells