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The global base station antenna (BST) market size was USD 5.68 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 18.37 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 16.2% during the forecast period.
The market is expected to show significant growth owing to the wide applications of BST in 4G/LTE and 5G communication infrastructures. The rising implementation of 5G infrastructures across countries to enhance network service performance and user experience is likely to drive the demand for BST antennas. These antennas are witnessing tremendous demand in areas such as connected cars, precision agriculture, military & defense, and smart cities, among others, owing to their efficient and reliable communication capabilities. They also offer excellent connectivity in the highly-dense network areas, which is an important factor for ensuring stability in mobile communication and 5G infrastructures. For example, in September 2018, CommScope Holding Company launched OneCell C-RAN small cells to enhance the wireless performance of in-building 5G infrastructure.
Supply Chain Disruptions Triggered by COVID-19 to Impact Market Growth
The coronavirus outbreak has significantly impacted the activities in manufacturing plants and factories worldwide. This pandemic has also affected the BST antenna production plans for 2020. Due to the outbreak, 5G infrastructure providers have postponed their 5G rollout plans. For instance, CommScope Holding Company’s net sales have fallen by USD 70 million in 2020 owing to the supply chain disruptions. Considering the present scenario and the uncertainty of the pandemic, the company has shifted its entire 2020 work plan to next year. Similarly, the Swedish company Ericsson and Rakuten Mobile of Japan have postponed their 5G rollouts, which are now expected to get completed by 2022.
Furthermore, the unavailability of components and equipment required for antennas has disrupted several companies’ production plans. The component providers are facing delivery issues owing to the temporary closure of borders and other disruptions in the supply chain. For instance, PCTEL Inc. suffered a 19% drop in its revenues due to the pandemic crisis. This has deeply impacted the market growth. Besides, the trade war between China and the US is also likely to impact 5G rollout plans and other related businesses. In April 2020, for instance, citing security concerns, the US Federal Communications Commission banned all Chinese Telecom companies’ operations in the US. Similarly, many countries such as the US, India, Australia, South Korea, France, Canada, Germany, Japan, and the UK have entered into trade wars with China and are likely to ally against China’s 5G infrastructure plans. This will inevitably affect the supply and demand dynamics of the BST antenna market as China is the key provider in the market.
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High Capacity Smart Antennas to Improve Mobile Communication Infrastructure
Smart antennas offer superior wireless network capacity and coverage range to cater to the seamless voice, data, and control services of 4G and 5G technologies. These antennas have emerged as a promising technology to improve the performance of mobile communication. Smart antennas use the beam-forming technique that reduces interference levels and improves the network capacity of the network operator.
The implementation of smart antennas increases the user capacity and coverage of the systems and thus supports in providing superior quality services. Also, they offer maximum data rate, which helps operators in providing efficient services for multiple users at the same time. This is boosting the application of smart antennas in mobile/wireless communication services. Similarly, the advancements in wireless systems are creating strong demand for smart, high-efficiency, and intelligent adaptive antennas. Thus, the capabilities of smart antennas are likely to drive its demand in mobile communication infrastructure.
Growing 5G Infrastructure to Drive the BST Antenna Market Growth
5G infrastructures offer capabilities such as high speed, low latency, and maximum coverage network causing the demand for 5G technology to rise rapidly across countries. Countries such as China, the US, the UK, and South Korea are aggressively implementing 5G technology to provide better quality communication services.
In November 2019, China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom launched 5G technology across 50 cities in China. To cover these 50 cities, the companies implemented more than 86,000 base stations in China.
In April 2019, the Government of South Korea invested USD 26 million in deploying 5G technology across 100 cities. According to the country’s Ministry of Science and ICT, the country witnessed 5.36 million 5G subscribers in February 2020, with a growth rate of 8% over the previous year.
The base station antenna is one of the key components in 5G infrastructures as it supports its high network capacity and data rates. The rapid implementation of 5G technology is expected to boost the demand for these antennas. Thus, the growing demand for 5G technology is expected to drive the demand for these antennas.
High Energy Consumption to Hamper Market Growth
High power-consuming base station antennas are likely to challenge the market’s growth during the forecast period. According to the 2019 reports by China Mobile, 5G base stations are likely to consume three times more power than the 4G LTE base stations. The exponential power requirement at 5G base stations is owing to the massive implementation of antennas.
Moreover, these stations also require field-programmable gate arrays, microwave or millimeter-wave transceivers, and integrated MIMO antennas, among others, which are consuming power at an alarming intensity. Thus, the growing implementation of 5G infrastructure will further increase operators’ energy bills and is thus likely to challenge the market growth. However, large investments and researches on energy-efficient equipment may provide solutions to these issues.
High Capacity of Small Cell Antennas to Augment the Demand for 5G RAN
Based on the antenna type, this market is categorized into omni antenna, sector antenna, dipole antenna, multi-beam antenna, small cell, and others. Among these, omni antennas are expected to dominate the type segment during the forecast period. These types of antennas offer uniform 360-degree directional vertical coverage, which helps in providing stable connection in congested network areas.
The small cell antennas are expected to gain considerable traction during the forecast period owing to their high wireless network capacity offering in densely connected areas. The exponentially growing demand for mobile networks and their indoor applications are likely to drive the demand for small cell antennas. The deployment of these antennas is also growing on account of their high coverage capabilities for indoor and outdoor services.
Similarly, the multi-beam antenna segment is gaining steady traction as these antennas offer better network coverage at affordable prices. Their better service quality at lower costs is driving the demand for multi-beam antennas in 3G/4G LTE.
Growing Number of Connected Devices to Boost 5G Demand
Based on technology, the market is segmented into 3G, 4G/LTE, and 5G. The 4G/LTE segment is expected to lead throughout the forecast period as 4G offers fast data transmission compared to the 3G technology. In fact, 4G technology is expected to dominate the market in the forecast period despite the 5G infrastructure rollouts. According to GSMA’s 2020 report, 52% of global connections are still connected through 4G and are expected to grow to 56% by 2025.
The 5G technology segment is expected to show substantial growth during the forecast period owing to the growing demand for higher bandwidth and wider coverage network for handling increasing data traffic. The rapid implementation of 5G technology is expected to boost the demand for more advanced BST antennas. The growing need to keep devices and equipment connected is likely to drive the 5G base station antennas market.
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Increasing Demand for Network Services to Boost the Mobile Communication Segment
Based on application, the global market is segmented into mobile communication, intelligent transport, the industrial internet of things (IIoT), smart city, military and defense, and others (precision agriculture, remote monitoring & control, etc.).
The mobile communication and military & defense segments are expected to lead the market. The increasing number of network connections is likely to drive the demand for base station antennas. These antennas offer excellent network coverage to provide better connectivity and user experience. The ongoing projects related to 5G mobile communication technologies are further expected to accelerate the demand for these antennas.
The military and defense sector depends heavily on secure communication and precision connectivity. The increasing demand for antennas for conveying critical field data in challenging environments is expected to drive the adoption of BST antennas in military and defense applications.
Further, the need for these antennas in smart cities for continuous real-time connection between devices and solutions is expected to fuel the growth of the market during the forecast period.
Similarly, intelligent transportation is likely to gain steady growth during the forecast period. The growing demand for wider connectivity range and capacity in smart transportations such as connected cars, driver-assisted cars, and smart traffic insights, among others, are likely to drive the demand for BST antennas. These antennas enhance the connectivity and performance of the connected vehicles to provide efficient services.
Asia Pacific Base Station Antenna Market Size, 2016-2027 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific is expected to dominate the base station antenna market share during the forecast period. The increasing intensity of 5G rollouts across countries such as China, South Korea, and Japan is expected to drive the BST antenna demand in this region. China is expected to lead the market during the forecast period. The presence of a large number of BST antenna providers and manufacturers in China is likely to fuel the growth of the market in this country. As per the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) of China 2020, 5G mobile shipments have reached 59.85 million units.
Japan is anticipated to gain the second-largest market share after China, owing to the rapidly growing 5G connections in the country. According to a GSMA report, Japan is expected to gain 95 million connections towards the end of 2025. This is likely to drive the demand for advanced BST antennas. As per a report published by the Government of Japan, in 2019, more than 860,000 base station antennas were installed in Japan. India is also expected to gain prominence owing to the rapidly transforming telecom industry and an increasing number of mobile subscribers.
The exponential growth in data traffic in India is compelling operators to adopt small cell antennas. Deloitte Indian Tower Industry report states that 44% of data traffic in India is likely to be transferred onto small cells by 2020. South Korea is also growing steadily, with an increase of 85,000 5G base stations in 2018.
The market in Europe is expected to grow at a healthy CAGR during the forecast period owing to growing mobile network services and infrastructures. The rising investments in 5G infrastructures are likely to boost the BST antenna market in the region. At present, companies such as Nokia, Ericsson, and Huawei are the most reliable and credible 5G antenna suppliers in Europe.
The UK, Germany, and France are expected to grab more than half of the market share in Europe. Russia is expected to gain traction owing to the operators’ rising interest in manufacturing 5G base station equipment. The country is also focusing on collaborations to provide efficient 5G infrastructure. For instance, Tele2 and Ericsson collaborated to launch 5G infrastructure in Moscow in 2019. Under the agreement, more than 50,000 base stations have been deployed across the country.
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The Middle East & Africa region is expected to display significant growth during the forecast period owing to increasing investments in 5G infrastructures. The GCC countries are highly focused on providing 5G mobile services to smartphone users in the region.
North America is expected to hold the second-largest market share and is predicted to showcase steady growth during the forecast period. The US is expected to gain traction owing to the vast rollout of 5G infrastructures in the country. Also, the US mobile users’ growing interest in live events, super bowl stadium matches, and concerts is driving the demand for efficient antennas for better coverage.
South America is also expected to show significant growth owing to the increasing internet penetration and mobile users. The rapidly growing subscribers’ base is driving the demand for efficient antennas.
CommScope to Expand Base Station Antenna Business through Strategic Acquisitions and Collaborations
CommScope Holding Company, Inc. is expanding its antenna product portfolio to gain maximum market share. The company is collaborating and acquiring key antenna manufacturers to widen its offerings and gain additional expertise related to the market. For instance, the company has secured antenna patents from the acquisition of Fractus S.A. Moreover, the company is also launching innovative BST antennas to cater to the rising need for 5G infrastructure.
The other key providers such as Huawei Technologies, Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson, PCTEL, Inc., Amphenol Procom, and Nokia, among others, are making huge investments in developing new advanced antennas to meet the standard requirements needed for 5G infrastructure. The companies are investing in research services to develop innovative technologies. They are also collaborating with local key players to expand their businesses globally.
October 2019 – CommScope Holding Company announced an agreement with a Spain-based company, Fractus S.A., to acquire its base station antenna technology. Fractus S.A. transferred its BST antenna patents to CommScope. The acquisition is expected to provide significant value to CommScope’s antennas with new and innovative features.
February 2019 – CommScope Holding Company, Inc. launched 5G-enabled 3.5 GHz-capable antennas to improve network capacity and migration. The new antennas support micro and outdoor small cell and spectral efficiencies. They also provide new avenues for operators with overburdened networks in urban areas.
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The base station antenna market research report highlights leading regions across the world to offer a better understanding of the user. Furthermore, the report provides insights into the latest industry trends and analyzes technologies that are being deployed at a rapid pace at the global level. It further highlights some of the growth-stimulating factors and restraints, helping the reader to gain in-depth knowledge about the market.
Value (USD Billion)
Type; Technology; Application; and Geography
The global base station antenna (BST) market is projected to reach USD 18.37 billion by 2027.
In 2019, the market value stood at USD 5.68 billion.
The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 16.2% during the forecast period.
The smart city segment by application is likely to lead the market.
Growing 5G infrastructure is likely to drive market growth.
Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., Nokia Network, PCTEL, Inc., and CommScope Holding Company, Inc. are some of the key players in the market.
Asia Pacific region is expected to hold the highest market share.
Europe is expected to grow with the highest CAGR.
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