Europe continues to be at the forefront of wireless broadband, both for mobile broadband and for fixed-line wireless via WiFi and WiMAX infrastructure. The sector has been able to utilise a range of spectrum including the 2.5GHz band, as well as spectrum in the 900MHz and 450MHz bands and more recently in the valuable digital dividend 800MHz range. The EC has initiated plans for additional spectrum in the 700MHz band, currently used by broadcasters, to be made available for mobile broadband use across the European Union by 2020. Some regulators, including Ofcom in the UK, are making initial steps to release spectrum in this band as early as 2018. WiMAX and WiFi service providers cannot yet compete with DSL and cable on price or capability, and have targeted their offerings as a complement to existing fixed-line services as well as established 3G and 4G products. Yet the anticipated approval of the 802.11ax standard in 2016 will herald data rates perhaps ten times that currently available, with vendors touting 10Gb/a data rates on routers set to be commercially available in 2018. This report presents statistics and analysis on Europe’s wireless broadband market, including developments in LTE, WiMAX and WiFi, as well as spectrum management and satellite broadband.
EC proposes reusing 700MHz band for mobile broadband by 2020; Inmarsat to complete Global Xpress network by end-2014; Next Generation Hotspot deployments; 800MHz spectrum auctions progress for wireless broadband.
Number of pages 15
Last updated 25 Nov 2014
Analyst: Henry Lancaster
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