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Australian Wireless Broadband Growth to Outpace Total Market by Five Times, Predicts IDC

  • 20 September, 2004 10:49

<p>NORTH SYDNEY, September 20th, 2004 - The number of Australian Wireless Broadband (WBB) users is projected to rise exponentially from just over 25,000 this year to almost 287,000 in 2008 - five times faster than the overall broadband market, according to IDC's latest research into this incipient but fast-growing market segment.</p>
<p>Australia's low broadband penetration and difficulty in obtaining quality wireline broadband connections in remote and underserved areas will continue to make WBB an ideal alternative. In the past six months, the market has gained extraordinary momentum, thanks to a concerted push by service providers such as BigAir, Unwired and Personal Broadband of Sydney as well as Pacific Wireless and Access Providers of Melbourne.</p>
<p>"Due to its unique ability to fill in the 'speed and coverage' void largely left by other wireless technologies such as cellular and wireless LAN, WBB has the potential to dominate that void and force more established players to redefine their value propositions and readjust their positioning and pricing strategies," said Warren Chaisatien, IDC Australia's Senior Analyst for Mobile &amp; Wireless Solutions.</p>
<p>"The real disruption will come when voice becomes an integrated part of WBB technology and all proprietary WBB solutions become standards-compliant – moves that can be expected in the next two years," added Mr Chaisatien.</p>
<p>The study, titled In the Fast Lane: Australian Wireless Broadband Market Update, 4Q2004, also found that:</p>
<p>* The fixed wireless and mobile broadband sub-segments are converging as WBB service providers start to offer both stationary and mobility products. Future competition will also come from "outsiders," including 3G cellular and business-grade DSL carriers;</p>
<p>* Australian businesses, particularly small and medium enterprises are very receptive to WBB technology and are highly interested in WBB-based VoIP and in using WBB as a key technology to mobilise their operations; and</p>
<p>* A proper "intervention mechanism" is needed for the upcoming auction of additional WBB spectrum to ensure smaller operators, prospective startups and, most importantly, users in remote communities where population and economic justification are not strong do not become disadvantaged.</p>
<p>This IDC study provides profiles and strategies of major WBB service providers and includes an updated five-year forecast of the Australian WBB market. It also provides discussions on key market developments, including the morphing competitive landscape, standards evolution, spectrum policy, and local adoption trends based on recent IDC end-user surveys.</p>
<p>For press enquiries please contact:
Warren Chaisatien
Senior Analyst, Wireless and Mobile Communications
Phone: 61 2 9925 2256</p>

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