Many subscribers have enjoyed the power and speed of LTE (News - Alert) with their data plans. Now, thanks to a hefty order of IP Multimedia System (IMS) core equipment and application server licenses by Alcatel-Lucent, Infonetics Research (News - Alert) predicts that operators are headed toward significant VoLTE deployments within the next five years.
“While commercial VoLTE services have yet to launch, this is a taste of what is to come as operators push forward over the next 5+ years,” noted Diane Myers, principal analyst for VoIP and IMS at Infonetics. “That said, large equipment orders will be sporadic and the IMS market will continue to be lumpy.”
Overall, Alcatel-Lucent’s (News - Alert) purchases propelled the VoIP equipment market to $715 million, a one percent increase over 2011 Q4 revenues. Myers believes that fixed-line network transformation, fixed-mobile convergence, and voice over broadband (VoBB) projects over IMS will continue to drive market growth.
IMS core equipment, session border controller and voice application server sales are up, pushing revenues forward even when softswitch sales and legacy trunk media gateway sales have softened. North America led the spending spree, spending 18 percent more than it did during 2011 Q4 and 76 percent over 2011 Q1.
Overall, the Infonetics team predicts that mobile and fixed-line subscribers on IMS networks will increase 42 percent in 2012, topping 250 million worldwide. Currently, Alcatel-Lucent holds the Number One spot in market share for service provider VoIP and IMS. With its rise to Number One, Alcatel-Lucent ousted perennial leaders Huawei (News - Alert) and GENBAND.
IMS is part of the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP). In essence, IMS allows mobile communications networks that intersect with the PSTN to be deployed en masse. Vendors could bring new services online such as voice, fax, E-Mail, Internet access, UC, VoIP and instant messaging as they evolve, which means that customers would not have to constantly change carriers to keep up with the latest technology.