In its latest forecast for Outdoor Small Cells, ABI Research upholds its expectations that 2015 marks the start of meaningful deployments, with the market expected to grow at CAGR of 43 percent till 2020.
ABI said that in 2015, the challenges of backhaul, power, permitting and siting, which previously stalled small cells rollout, are being overcome with Small Cells as a Service (SCaaS) solutions from vendors and infrastructure owners, including Alcatel-Lucent, American Tower, Crown Castle, Ericsson, Nokia Networks and Towerstream. Several of these companies are reporting in earnings calls that small cell-related revenue is growing strongly quarter-on-quarter.
Additionally, 2015 marks 4G small cells as the fastest growing small cell type in the market driven by venue and dense urban deployments. ABI Research forecasts the number of LTE small cells to double in 2015 and by a similar factor each subsequent year. In 2020, the value of LTE small cells will represent more than 85 percent of the small cell equipment market.
The Asia-Pacific region, given its large size and 4G deployments in South Korea and Japan, as well as the start of commercial TD-LTE operations in China and India, will grow to represent almost 50 percent of the worldwide small cell equipment market by 2017, said ABI Research.