Over 1 million distributed antenna system (DAS) nodes were shipped in 2012, sending worldwide DAS revenue to $1.9 billion — an increase of 4% over 2011, according to a new report from Infonetics. And the market is predicted to continue expanding at a steady rate despite the arrival of small cells.
“DAS first became commercially viable in the late 1980s with the advent of optical fiber installed as a transport medium. Since then, the DAS business has been brisk with its lot of boom and bust, growing into a multi-billion dollar market crowded with a flurry of vendor specialists,” explains Stéphane Téral, principal analyst for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics at Infonetics Research.
“And contrary to all the hype and buzz surrounding small cells, the need for DAS is not going away anytime soon! In fact, most service providers have already included DAS as a key component of their future ‘small cell’ mobile network expansion plans,” continues Téral. “With no signs of abating over the next 5 years, we believe global DAS revenue will grow at a CAGR of 3% from 2012 to 2017 and DAS node shipments will double, driven by a combination of coverage and capacity improvements in specific venues.”
- DAS revenue represents just 5% of the total mobile infrastructure market
- U.S.-based CommScope leads the global DAS market with 17% market share, followed by Hong Kong–headquartered Comba
- Sports and entertainment stadiums make up the bulk of the DAS business and are considered in-building or indoor DAS; outdoor DAS is a niche market
- The U.S. and China are the world’s largest DAS markets and are expected to remain so through at least 2017 due to the number and size of their stadiums, convention centers, and transportation stations and ports.