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Mobile Broadband for Critical Communications in Europe

  • June 2014
  • 79 pages
  • Frost & Sullivan
Report ID: 2212031


Table of Contents

LTE Drives MNO Opportunities

Communications customers in emergency services, transportation, utilities, oil and gas, and other mission-critical sectors have exceptional requirements for quality of service. Suppliers must provide the highest levels of reliability, coverage, and advanced functionality. The transition from voice-centric operations to integrated voice and data applications involves complex decisions to protect sunk investments. This research service explains the migration roadmaps available to customers and highlights the solutions and propositions that are emerging in the European market.

Research Background
-This research service analyses demand for mobile broadband among users of critical communications solutions and services.
-It examines the technological and economic factors shaping the development of this market and the supplier landscape.
-The study forms part of Frost & Sullivan’s coverage of the mobile communications market in Europe, from delivery infrastructure and communication management to end-user content and applications.
-This study also draws on our Connected Industries programme, which presents analyses of demand in specific verticals for ICT. For in-depth insight into these markets, we draw on the expertise of Frost & Sullivan’s industry research in the energy, automotive and transportation, public safety, healthcare, and manufacturing sectors.

Key Findings
-Professional mobile radio (PMR) networks deliver high-quality and resilient voice services to critical communications users in the emergency services, transportation, utilities, oil and gas, and other sectors that are responsible for critical infrastructure, or which operate in potentially hazardous conditions.
-However, PMR standards are over years old and unable to support more than narrowband data service. While consumers expect to access streaming video on their smartphones, some critical communications personnel can barely complete a reliable remote database enquiry from their devices.
-PMR users must decide on a migration path to mobile broadband, and ultimately to LTE (long-term evolution), while retaining the resilience and quality of existing PMR voice services.
-The introduction of LTE to the market gives new entrants the chance to shake up the PMR market and either displace or partner with incumbent suppliers.
-Critical communications users are overdue the benefits of mobile broadband in their daily work, which is crucial for economic growth and societal wellbeing.
-Public safety is the largest market sector and is leading lobbying efforts to win dedicated spectrum and to include advanced voice features in the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) LTE standards.
-Public safety operators (PSOs) are launching mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) as an incremental step towards the direct management of mobile broadband and as a platform for applications innovation. MVNOs also help prevent market fragmentation by distributing the benefits of broadband data among their customers, large and small.
-A direct role for mobile network operators (MNOs) seems assured in Europe, where dedicated spectrum is less attainable than in other regions. The shared spectrum model gives MNOs an opportunity to monetise their LTE RAN (random access network) investments.
-More data use cases will emerge as suppliers become familiar with customer requirements for operational efficiency, safety, and financial return on investment (RoI).
-Terrestrial trunked radio (TETRA) voice will coexist with LTE data for at least years in many markets while TETRAPOL has a shorter life expectancy. Standardised interoperability with IP (Internet Protocol) is essential for backwards compatibility and future transitions to Voice-over LTE (VoLTE).

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