LightTrends Newsletter

1H22 wireless infrastructure softness lingered in 3Q22

December 2022

LightCounting releases its 3Q22 Wireless Infrastructure Market Size, Share, and Forecast

3Q22 was almost a carbon copy of 2Q22, which signals that the 5G-driven wireless infrastructure market is reaching its peak as the first wave of 5G rollouts wane. Global uncertainties, lingering supply chain constraints, and forex headwinds contributed to another soft 3Q22 that followed an already sluggish 1H22. In the meantime, the wireless infrastructure market continued to operate at its equilibrium reached in 2021: the 2 opposite spheres of influence, the East led by China versus the West defined as the U.S. and its allies, are becoming more balanced. We found that the West accounted for 50.5% of the global wireless infrastructure market while the East made up for the rest, with China accounting for more than 80% of the East.

“Overall, market dynamics continued to operate at equilibrium with the unabated execution of the 5G contracts awarded between 2H20 and 1H21. However, this also means that we are reaching the end of this first 5G wave, which confirms our view that the global wireless infrastructure market is peaking this year,” said Stéphane Téral, Chief Analyst at LightCounting Market Research.

As a result, the global wireless infrastructure market was down 1% sequentially and declined 8% YoY, sustained by 5G RAN, which was the only category that grew sequentially. 5G core ended flat sequentially but up 28% YoY, mainly driven by China. In addition, open RAN sales were weak again because Rakuten Mobile is ahead of its schedule and Dish’s 5G network construction did not offset the delays in the 1&1 network rollout in Germany.

After this year’s peak, our model points to a slow single-digit declining market. This bell-shaped pattern reflects the differences in regional and national agendas, including the COVID-19 impact as well as the impact of “the 2-year step function”—2 years (2019 and 2020) in a row of double-digit growth. The model considers all the 5G 3-year rollout plans we have gathered from many service providers and indicates strong activity through 2022 and 2023.

About the report:

Wireless Infrastructure quarterly report analyzes the wireless infrastructure market worldwide and covers 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G radio access network (RAN) and core network nodes. It presents historical data from 2016 to 2021 of quarterly market size and vendor market shares, and a detailed market forecast through 2027 for 2G/3G/4G/5G RAN, including open vRAN, and core networks (EPC, vEPC, and 5GC) for each region (North America, Europe Middle East Africa, Asia Pacific, Caribbean Latin America). The historical data accounts for the sales of more than 30 wireless infrastructure vendors, including vendors that shared confidential sales data with LightCounting. The market forecast is based on a model correlating wireless infrastructure vendor sales with 20 years of service provider network rollout pattern analysis and upgrade and expansion plans.

Ready to connect with LightCounting?

Enabling effective decision-making based on a unique combination of quantitative and qualitative analysis.
Reach us at

Contact Us