The overall Wireless Packet Core market grew two percent during the fourth quarter of 2013 versus the year-ago period, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. The higher growth portion of the market that is used to manage LTE wireless networks, called Evolved Packet Core (EPC), experienced significantly higher growth than the total market.
"This year, 2014, will see significant shifts in the packet core market," explained Chris DePuy, Vice President of Wireless Packet Core Research at Dell'Oro Group. "The introduction of NFV systems and new LTE projects emerging outside of US, Korea and Japan will offer both challenges and opportunities for the wireless packet core market."
- North American growth slowed significantly. Asia-Pacific growth, specifically, China, is expected to contribute significantly to growth in 2014. Vendors with significant exposure to Chinese EPC contracts include Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Huawei, NSN, ZTE, and others.
- Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), is now available from many vendors. This is a software-only version of packet core products that can be run on computer servers. Its use represents a significant departure from traditional bundled software and hardware deployments.
- Average price per license dropped noticeably in the fourth quarter versus the third quarter, as vendors offered new licensing terms to service providers.
- Installed base of MME licenses as a percentage of total mobile subscribers in North America is ten times greater than each of the other three major regions.