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Mobile Hotspots: Heating Up and Driving Mobile Data Growth
In-Stat/MDR, November 2010, Pages: 30
Mobile hotspots, devices that connect to a mobile data network like HSPA and bridge the signal using Wi-Fi, have had remarkable growth these past two years. Although Novatel's MiFi hotspots have gained the most attention in this area, there are actually many companies making these devices, and mobile hotspot functionality is starting to appear in cellphones and automobiles.
This report looks at what is driving adoption of these devices, covers the different types of devices available, looks at pricing and service plans, and profiles some of the manufacturers. Mobile hotspot equipment manufacturers profiled in this report include: Cisco/Linksys, CradlePoint, Huawei, Netgear, Novatel, Option Wireless, and Sierra Wireless.
In addition to company profiles, this report includes forecasts for standalone mobile hotspots, automotive mobile hotspots, and mobile phones with mobile hotspot functionality, in addition to device revenues and service revenues for each hotspot class. Also included is a listing of many mobile hotspots available along with a sampling of mobile hotspot service plans offered by operators.
- The Options
- Types of Mobile Hotspots
-- The External Cellular Modem Hotspot
-- The Battery Powered Portable Mobile
-- The Home Cable Modem/DSL Modem Replacement
-- Handsets with Built-In Mobile Hotspot Capabilities
-- Add-On Mobile Hotspot Applications
- Stumbling Blocks
- Customer Understanding
- Software Mobile Hotspots
- Smartphones and Better Devices
- The Expense
Mobile Hotspot Market Forecasts
- Option Wireless
- Sierra Wireless
List of Tables
Table 1. Standalone Mobile Hotspot Devices, 2009–2015 (Units in Thousands, Revenue US$ in Millions)
Table 2. Automotive Mobile Hotspots, 2009–2015 (Units in Thousands, Revenue US$ in Millions)
Table 3. Mobile Hotspot-Enabled Handsets, 2009–2015 (Units in Thousands, Revenue US$ in Millions)
Table 4. Mobile Hotspot Contract Plans by Wireless Operator
Table 5. Mobile Hotspot Pay-As-You-Go Plans by Wireless Operator
Table 6. Handsets with Mobile Hotspot Feature
Table 7. Mobile Hotspot Devices by Wireless Operator
Table 8. Mobile Hotspots with Internal Modem and Battery
Table 9. Mobile Hotspots with Internal Modem and Line Powered
Table 10. Mobile Hotspots Requiring an External Modem
Standalone Mobile Hotspot Device Revenue Already Approaching $500 Million in 2010
The concept of a mobile hotspot, a device that connects to a mobile broadband connection and provides a bridge to a Wi-Fi LAN, is relatively new, with the first standalone mobile hotspot devices only appearing in the last two years. Yet, the number and types of mobile hotspots is growing almost daily and In-Stat (www.in-stat) forecasts that revenue from standalone mobile hotspot devices will approach $500 million by the end of 2010. Mobile hotspot service revenue is projected to reach into the tens of billions of dollars annually.
“Mobile hotspot device shipments are expected to grow for several years, but we expect some jockeying for the top position occurring between device categories,” says Allen Nogee, Principal Analyst. “Smartphones with embedded mobile hotspots have already cut into shipments for battery-powered mobile hotspot devices. Automotive hotspot devices might do the same. Standalone mobile hotspots will take on a new life again as they are positioned as home gateway devices for mobile operators selling broadband services to the home.”
New research by In-Stat reveals the following:
- Smartphone mobile hotspot functionality allows a mobile operator to typically charge an additional $20/month.
- While many automobiles will have mobile hotspot capabilities, only a small percentage of these car owners will activate their hotspot and pay for monthly services.
- A large market opportunity exists for mobile operators to provide WiMAX or LTE broadband services to home users and compete with DSL and cable providers.
Recent In-Stat research, Mobile Hotspots: Heating Up and Driving Mobile Data Growth (#IN1004787WBB), covers the three main types of mobile hotspot devices, standalone mobile hotspot devices, automotive mobile hotspots, and mobile smartphone hotspots. The report includes:
- 5 year device shipment and service revenue forecasts, for hotspot-enabled handsets, automotive, and standalone mobile hotspot devices.
- Pricing strategies
- Discussion of obstacles
- Company profiles; Cisco/Linksys, CradlePoint, Huawei, Netgear, Novatel, Option Wireless, and Sierra Wireless
This research is part of In-Stat’s Wireless Broadband service, which provides analysis and forecasts of the market for wireless broadband and communication infrastructure equipment and components, including backhaul; macro, micro, pico, and femtocell base stations; and associated semiconductors.
- Option Wireless
- Sierra Wireless