Densification of 5G and mMIMO networks, drivers of mobile infrastructure spending

Massive MIMO (mMIMO) will fuel the revenue of infrastructure providers in the future. This is the case in Asia Pacific, where mobile network operators are expected to deploy 28.3 million units representing more than 78% of the total mMIMO market by 2026, despite the ban on Chinese providers in the West.

According to a new report from ABI Research, the mMIMO market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 63.8% between 2020 and 2026 and reach $ 58.2 billion in 2026. Additionally, 5G densification and mMIMO will represent approximately 73% of outdoor solutions revenues and will reach 97.3 billion dollars in 2026.

“MMIMO enables mobile network operators (MNOs) to offer best-in-class service to end users while taking advantage of the cellular infrastructure and spectrum assets acquired for 5G,” says Johanna Alvarado, senior analyst at the consultancy. “The adoption of different configurations depends on multiple factors such as user density, site characteristics, local regulations and clutter. For example, Chinese operators are deploying mMIMO radios mainly with the 64T64R configuration, while in Korea del Sur, they are implementing 32T32R mMIMO due to space and mast weight restrictions, “explains Alvarado.

Additionally, in-building wireless technology will account for approximately 22% of total mobile network infrastructure revenues in the global market, reaching $ 34.4 billion in 2026. “Protocols such as 5G NR-Unlicensed (5G NR-U), Citizens Broadband Radio Systems (CBRS), Licensed Shared Access (LSA) and locally licensed spectrum will fuel the acceleration of small cell deployments in the enterprise domain, “adds the executive.

Open RAN

Another innovative technology in the 5G era is Open RAN. The dynamics of this market is affected by multiple factors. For example, the geopolitical environment that led to the ban on Chinese infrastructure providers, the performance of existing open RAN networks, and technological developments will affect their penetration in different regions. “However, revenues from the Open Ran market are expected to grow at a rate of 126.7%, which represents approximately 17.6% of total revenues in the outdoor environment that will reach 23.6 billion dollars by 2026 “, he concludes.

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