Report: Broadband CPE market booming; WiFi-enabled CPE not far behind

March 25, 2013
The market for WiFi-enabled CPE is "really heating up," reports Infonetics Research.

Infonetics Research has released excerpts from its 4th quarter 2012 (4Q12) and year-end Broadband CPE and Subscribers: PON, FTTH, Cable, and DSL market share and forecast report, which tracks DSL, cable, and fiber to the home (FTTH) customer premises equipment (CPE), residential gateways, and broadband subscribers.

Broadband CPE enjoyed its strongest year yet in 2012, benefiting from a combination of ongoing technology shifts and the need to support legacy broadband services and subscribers,” says Jeff Heynen, directing analyst for broadband access and pay TV at Infonetics Research.

The report states that, despite global broadband CPE revenue declining 3% sequentially in 4Q12, 2012 was a standout year for broadband CPE devices, with revenue increasing 13%, to $7.7 billion. The strongest growth came from the cable CPE segment, where revenue grew 26% year-over-year. DSL CPE shipments were down 4% in 2012; though on the bright side, VDSL CPE shipments jumped 39%, reaching 29 million units.

More: Report sees telecom sector growth outpacing GDP growth

Heynen adds, “WiFi-enabled CPE is really heating up. In 2012, nearly half of all DSL units sold were WiFi enabled, and we’re forecasting this to swell to 74% by 2017. The growth of WiFi-enabled CPE is proof-positive that service providers are quickly moving to more integrated devices to control the user experience in the home.”

According to the research, in terms of top equipment providers to the market, Huawei was the broadband CPE market share leader for 4Q12 and the full year 2012, followed closely by ZTE; both vendors benefitted significantly from the FTTH rollouts at China Telecom and China Unicom. ARRIS maintains the top revenue share spot in the DOCSIS 3.0 CPE segment, based on strong EMTA shipments to North American operators; Motorola, Cisco and Netgear follow.

“Cable operators are gaining significant traction with DOCSIS 3.0 in North America, Europe, Korea, and Japan, and they’re in the early stages of rolling out video gateways that combine DOCSIS CPE with video transcoding capabilities," concludes Heynen. "These gateways allow cable companies to deliver a whole-home, multi-screen service to customers, and we anticipate hearty growth for the devices over the next few years.”

In the highly competitive FTTH CPE segment, Infonetics expects ongoing vendor market share shifts in 2013, hinging largely on shipments in China. Worldwide, there were 57 million FTTH subscribers in 2012, while cable broadband subscribers totaled 111 million, according to the research.

Learn more about the report here.

Related: GPON, VDSL bright spots in lackluster broadband aggregation market

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