Two of the most successful technologies of the 20th century
the Internet and mobile telephony have formed another promising
technology, wireless Internet access, but the great promise of
this technology remains unfilled. Will it ever be realized? According
to Pioneer Consultings latest market & technology assessment
report, Wireless Internet Access over Unlicensed Spectrum: An
Alternative to 3G Mobile Data Networks, wireless Internet access
offers a sizable market opportunity with global equipment revenues
expected to grow from $3.1 billion (USD) in 2002 to $19.1 billion
in 2008. Profiting from this growth will be 4th Generation (4G)
wireless equipment providers such as Avaya, Nokia, Cisco, Sierra
Wireless, Compaq, Linksys among others.
Initially, the market opportunity for wireless Internet
access was not realized for several reasons including, its prematurity,
lack of development and the markets failure to recognize
these realities. Today, however, the Internet and mobile worlds
are finally beginning to converge, creating a new market that
will entail impressive growth.
According to Pioneer Consultings report, the market for
wireless Internet access will begin to take off over the next
few years, as mobile operators, wireless ISPs, and fixed operators
begin to build hot spot locations based on 4G technology
(wireless LANs based on 802.11b, a, g, HIPERLAN standards) and
2.5G and 3G networks. The report predicts that service provider
revenues for mobile and wireless Internet access will grow from
$1.0 billion (USD) in 2002 to $18.4 billion by 2008. 4G service
providers including Voicestream (through Mobilestar purchase),
Wayport, Boingo and Air2LAN are inline to see revenues increase
with the adoption of wireless Internet access technology.
Lower equipment costs, higher bandwidth services, access
to corporate intranets, and focus on high-traffic areas will help
4G succeed where previous generations of mobile data struggled,
says Paul Kellett, senior director of research at Pioneer Consulting.
In addition, the large potential user base created by the
phenomenal growth of wireless networking will help to spur the
rapid growth predicted for public access.
The Wireless Internet Access over Unlicensed Spectrum: An Alternative
to 3G Mobile Data Networks report examines the potential developments
that are driving growth in the wireless Internet access market,
including utilizing unlicensed spectrum, the so-called
4G technologies, through public access locations, and how this
will interact with existing mobile communications. The report
also provides a realistic assessment of the market opportunity
by examining the developments driving the growth of wireless Internet
access, the likely technologies involved, the impact the technologies
will have on equipment manufacturers, and the business models
that will likely develop to service customers.
For greater perspective on the wireless internet market worldwide,
Computer Industry Almanac estimated in March 2002 that by 2007,
over 50% of global internet users will be wireless internet users.
Consulting & eMarketer