Asia Pacific is World's Largest Source of LTE Revenue Thanks to China

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Globally, the macrocell 2G 3G 4G mobile infrastructure market totaled $11.2 billion in 2Q14, up 4% from 1Q14 and up 11% from 2Q13. Growth was a result of a strong LTE ramp up in China that created a huge eNodeB spike, capacity upgrades in the US, and sustained activity in Europe, India, and the Middle East.

"The astronomical LTE ramp-up in China is overshadowing strong LTE rollouts in Europe, reminiscent of China's great 3G rollout in 2009," says Stéphane Téral, principal analyst for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics at Infonetics Research.

"China Mobile kicked off its massive TD-LTE rollout and finished the second quarter of 2014 with 410,000 eNodeBs. This propelled Asia Pacific to roughly $3 billion, or 54%, of total LTE revenue, making the region the largest LTE revenue generator by far," continues Téral. "Meanwhile, China Unicom and China Telecom also deployed LTE, but at a more measured pace."

LTE accounted for half of overall mobile infrastructure revenue in 2Q14, hitting $5.6 billion (+8% over 1Q14).

In 2Q14, LTE rollouts fully offset the abyssal decline of 2G/3G and were again characterized by an interesting dynamic: Evolved-UTRAN (E-UTRAN) posted strong double-digit growth, while evolved packet core (EPC) took a deep dive. A bump in CDMA2000 and LTE rollouts has lifted Infonetics' global macrocell 2G/3G/4G mobile infrastructure market forecast, which is now anticipated to peak at $43.6 billion this year, up from $43 billion in 2013.

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