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9 out of 10 households to have Wi-Fi by 2019

Posted: 29 Jun 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Wi-Fi? 802.11ac?

The percentage of global households with Wi-Fi home gateways or routers supplied by their Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will rise from 66 per cent in 2014 to nearly 90 per cent in 2019. Many households rely on Wi-Fi for email, social networking and streaming high-quality over-the-top (OTT) video.

The number of connected devices per household continues to rise, driving the need for more connectivity. In North America alone, there will be nearly 13 connected devices per broadband household in 2019, compared to just 10 devices in 2014. The proliferation of connected devices runs parallel to heavy ISP infrastructure investments designed to provide higher bandwidth speed and the budget to market it to subscribers and prospects.

The rising number of devices can cause significant bandwidth congestion and quality-of-service issues with streaming video. Additionally, Wi-Fi has had to compete on wireless spectrum with other home wireless devices, including cordless phones and microwave ovens, which have caused signal degradation.

Operators are turning to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Standards Association's (IEEE-SA's) 802.11ac standard to solve these problems. Dual band 802.11ac allows for Wi-Fi operation on the 5GHz band, which does not face interference from other household appliances. Additionally, the specification will incorporate multi-user, multi-input and multi-output technology in the second half of 2015, allowing for concurrent Wi-Fi streams to multiple devices, which again doubles the theoretical Wi-Fi throughput.

Broadband CPE with 802.11ac Wi-Fi, including gateways, routers and multimedia home gateways with integrated modems, will be installed in more than 70 per cent of global broadband households by 2019. While 2014 was the first year 802.11ac was widely adopted, there will be more than 88 million 802.11ac unit shipments this yearnearly doubling again in 2016. Revenue from 802.11ac equipment is expected to grow from $1.5 billion in 2014 to greater than $10 billion in 2017.

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