Wireless LAN Gear Nears $5 Billion in 2014; 802.11ac Access Points Take Off



Technology market research firm Infonetics Research, now part of IHS Inc. (NYSE: IHS), today reported that almost 1.2 million 802.11ac access points shipped in the fourth quarter of 2014 (4Q14)—a quarter of all access points—cannibalizing 802.11n rather than the older 802.11a/b/g access points.

Infonetics’ 4Q14 and year-end Wireless LAN Equipment and WiFi Phones market share, size and forecast report tracks enterprise access points, wireless LAN (WLAN) controllers and WiFi phones.

“A pullback in K–12 spending in the US has caused a significant slowdown in the WLAN market, which, after having grown at double-digit rates for several years, grew only 6 percent in 2014,” said Matthias Machowinski, directing analyst for enterprise networks and video at Infonetics Research, now part of IHS.

“The good news is that the fourth quarter of 2014 looks to be the turning point. RFP activity from K–12 customers is accelerating in anticipation of new funding in 2015, and that, coupled with the introduction of 802.11ac wave 2 access points, will drive renewed growth in 2015,” Machowinski said.

WLAN MARKET HIGHLIGHTS

  • Worldwide wireless LAN (WLAN) equipment revenue reached $4.9 billion in 2014, growing just 6 percent over 2013—a far cry from the 20-percent-plus annual increases of a few years ago
  • In 4Q14, WLAN equipment sales totaled $1.3 billion, up 5 percent quarter-over-quarter, and up 10 percent year-over-year
  • Though demand for WiFi connectivity continues unabated—access point shipments were up 22 percent year-over-year in 2014—revenue growth has run out of steam due to fewer service provider and K-12 WiFi sales, 802.11ac not yet lifting ASPs, controller-less approaches and low-cost solutions
  • There was higher than usual demand for WiFi phones in 4Q14, influenced by a large number of deals, but this isn’t expected to be sustained in 2015
  • Despite fickle economic conditions, EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) was the fastest-growing major region in 2014, up 9 percent
  • Among the top 5 WLAN vendors—Aruba, Cisco, HP, Ruckus and Zebra—Ruckus led revenue growth in 2014

WIRELESS LAN REPORT SYNOPSIS

Infonetics’ quarterly WLAN equipment report provides worldwide and regional market size, vendor market share, forecasts through 2019, analysis and trends for WLAN infrastructure, including access points by type and technology, WLAN controllers, and enterprise single-mode WiFi phones. Vendors tracked: Aerohive, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, Aruba, Brocade, Buffalo, Cisco, D-Link, Extreme, Juniper, Meru, Netgear, HP, Huawei, Ruckus, Spectralink, TP Link, Ubiquiti, Vocera, Xirrus, Zebra, others. To purchase the report, contact Infonetics: www.infonetics.com/contact.asp.

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About IHS (www.ihs.com)

IHS (NYSE: IHS) is the leading source of insight, analytics and expertise in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Businesses and governments in more than 150 countries around the globe rely on the comprehensive content, expert independent analysis and flexible delivery methods of IHS to make high-impact decisions and develop strategies with speed and confidence. IHS has been in business since 1959 and became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, USA, IHS is committed to sustainable, profitable growth and employs about 8,800 people in 32 countries around the world.

IHS is a registered trademark of IHS Inc. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. © 2015 IHS Inc. All rights reserved.

About Infonetics Research (www.infonetics.com)

Infonetics Research, now part of IHS (NYSE: IHS), is an international market research and consulting firm serving the communications industry since 1990. A leader in defining and tracking emerging and established technologies in all world regions, Infonetics helps clients plan, strategize, and compete more effectively. Follow Infonetics on Twitter for the latest headlines: http://twitter.com/infonetics.

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