Wireless LAN, enterprise 10G switch markets grow

June 5, 2012
Report from Infonetics says the 10G Ethernet switch market will hit $10 billion next year, and 40G Ethernet has already exceeded expectations.

Quarterly market-share and forecast reports, covering the wireless LAN and Ethernet switch market and produced by Infonetics Research, say that both markets declined sequentially in the first quarter of 2012, but both also notched impressive year-over-year growth for the quarter.

Infonetics' directing analyst for enterprise networks and video Matthias Machowinski commented that the respective sequential declines were "mostly due to a typical seasonal buying lull, but also due to weakness in the EMEA [Europe Middle East Africa] region." He then added, "Despite the sequential lull, on a year-over-year basis, WLAN market growth remains strong, up in the double digits for the 10th straight quarter."

While dubbing wireless LAN "the more exciting part of the enterprise networking market," Machowinski pointed out, "a number of interesting things are happening on the wired side as well, including tremendous revenue growth in the 10G Ethernet switch segment, where port shipments doubled year-over-year and revenue is set to hit the $10-billion mark next year, as well as the rapid adoption of the latest technology arrival, 40G Ethernet, which has already exceeded expectations."

When announcing the availability of Infonetics' two quarterly reports, "Wireless LAN Equipment and WiFi Phones," and "Ethernet Switches," the research firm offered the following data points for each market segment.

Wireless LAN

  • Access point shipments have more than doubled over the last five years, and more than 3/4 of all units are based on 802.11n technology
  • Market leader Cisco and number-two Aruba both increased market share in the first quarter of 2012. Motorola took the number-three spot from HP, and Ruckus maintained fifth position

Ethernet Switch

  • 10G Ethernet port shipments declined 1 percent sequentially, after a 31-percent increase in the fourth quarter of 2011. Even so, shipments for Q1 2012 were double that of the same quarter in 2011. Data center upgrades, 10G server adoption, server virtualization and core network buildouts all boosted the market.
  • 40G Ethernet sales grew 50 percent sequentially, driven by dedicated 16xQSFP+ fixed switches.
  • In North America, the overall Ethernet switch market was up 14 percent on a year-over-year basis and down 11 percent sequentially, which Infonetics attributed to seasonal trends.

You can find out more about the WLAN and Ethernet Switch reports from Infonetics here.

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