Worldwide mobile WiMAX infrastructure revenues nearly quadrupled in the third quarter of 2008 over the third quarter of 2007, according to the latest figures.

Scott Siegler, senior analyst of Mobile Infrastructure research at Dell’Oro Group, said that with LTE still a couple of years away, WiMAX has become the first next generation technology with commercial service.

“Mobile WiMAX revenues were very strong in the third quarter of last year, and we anticipate revenue for the fourth quarter to set another record," he said.

"However, as we look into 2009, we expect the WiMAX market to be hit rather hard by the economic downturn."

Siegler said building out brand new networks from scratch requires tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars of capital.

He anticipate many network buildouts will be put on hold or delayed into 2010 as a result of the tightening in the credit markets, the increasing cost of capital and the decrease in demand for broadband data as consumer spending weakens.

"With initial LTE rollouts coming in the 2010 to 2011 timeframe, these delays will shorten the time to market advantage WiMAX currently has over LTE,” he said.

The report also shows that the top four Mobile WiMAX vendors in the quarter – Samsung, Motorola, Alcatel-Lucent and Alvarion – represented nearly 90 per cent of the total market.

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