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Industry News

Commercial Market

May 1, 1999
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Commercial Market

International Space Business Council Formed
The International Space Business Council (ISBC) has been established in an effort to meet the needs of the evolving and expanding global space industry whose market has grown to an estimated $88 B. The Council was formed following discussions with executives from all space industry sectors who indicated that a group focused on the business aspects of space was critical. Using a unique position of international neutrality, ISBC's mission is to develop resources and activities supporting near-term business developments and encourage future growth. ISBC will establish an Entrepreneurial Assistance Program to encourage the completion of new satellites and space ventures and assist in the establishment and expansion of market segments. In addition, the Council also plans to develop Space Industry Codes (SIC™) to assist design and procurement personnel in locating space products and services.

Members of the Council Steering Committee include representatives from Globecomm, Loral Orion and KPMG Peat Marwick. For additional information, contact Peggie Gaskamp, ISBC director of membership and marketing, at (703) 524-2766.

Studies Rank Wireless Infrastructure Equipment Suppliers/Forecast Wireless Market Growth
A report from Allied Business Intelligence, "Wireless Base Stations: Markets, Technologies & Building Blocks," identifies 1998's leading providers of wireless infrastructure-to-handset equipment for all US wireless communications systems regardless of the technology employed. Lucent leads the list with a 33 percent share of the market followed by Nortel with 20 percent, Motorola with 12 percent, QUALCOMM with seven percent and Nokia with four percent.

Despite the recent slowdown in some foreign markets in 1998, the report forecasts strong infrastructure equipment sales during the next five years. Base station deployment -- just under one million at the end of 1998 -- is expected to grow to 2.5 million by the end of 2003, a compound annual growth rate of 21 percent.

Problems that may impact that growth rate during the next five years include downsized economies, more widespread health concerns and difficult station-siting situations. However, according to the study, these problems are not expected to have a material impact on infrastructure growth. The momentum generated during the past two years by the growth of digital technology applications is expected to carry the industry to the new heights forecast for the five-year period.

A second study from Allied Business Intelligence, "Wireless 99," examines the current market status, market potential and competitive pressures of key wireless technologies, and forecasts their positions in 2005 and beyond. Included are analyses of cellular/PCS, wireless local loop, wireless local area network, very small aperture terminal, Global Positioning System, satellite television and broadband, local multipoint distribution system/multichannel multipoint distribution system, HALO (HALE), specialized mobile radio and microwave radio.

Connectivity is expected to expand as wireless communications move into non-telco media that incorporate video, telephony and data. Enhanced information services are also expected to contribute to strong growth. World communications revenue for products and services is approaching an estimated $1 T and is growing at a rate of five to six percent per year.

Fixed and mobile communications are expected to contribute growth of $25 B to $35 B annually; cellular/PCS's current 80 million US subscribers are already contributing close to $35 B per year. Worldwide cellular/PCS subscribers are forecast to grow from their 1998 level of 250 million to over 600 million by the end of 2005. For additional information, contact Allied Business Intelligence at (516) 624-3113 or info@alliedworld.com.

Two-way Paging to Salvage North and Latin American Paging Markets
According to a new study from Frost & Sullivan, "North American and Latin American Pager Markets," the declining growth of paging markets is driving market participants to two-way paging systems due to features such as data-transfer capabilities, which increase usage time. The compound annual growth rate for these two-way pager markets is expected to reach 12.1 percent for the forecast period. The study analyzes two geographic sections: North America (the US and Canada) and all Latin American countries. Within each geographic segment, markets are divided into one- and two-way paging segments, and revenues are reported for one-way numeric, alphanumeric and voice models, as well as two-way alphanumeric and voice pagers.

While Motorola continues to dominate the overall market, competition from other companies that offer comparable features and performance at lower prices is reducing Motorola's market share. While competing technologies threaten the market, the study predicts that paging will continue to maintain a significant position in the wireless market. The development of a two-way paging infrastructure and expansion of voice paging are expected to sustain profitability for manufacturers and service providers. In addition, Internet integration is forecast to add further to providers' prospects. The study analyzes the competitive situations and identifies business opportunities that will help both suppliers and providers participate in future revenue sources. For additional information, contact Kimberly Barney at Frost & Sullivan (650) 237-4383.

Laptop Wireless Antenna Introduced
Antennas America Inc. has introduced an antenna designed to provide wireless access to the Internet and other critical data from laptop computers. The antenna is attached to the top of the computer cover and operates through a wireless modem inserted in the computer's Personal Computer Memory Card International Association slot. The antenna's unique technical advantage is its ability to function well in unpredictable environments without requiring modification of its fundamental design.

The model F800 antenna operates in the 800 to 900 MHz band and can also be employed as a cellular car telephone antenna when installed under the dashboard or on the rear deck of a vehicle. The model F900 antenna covers the 880 to 960 MHz band, which serves some US data and GSM Europe systems. In vertical installations, the F800 and F900 units offer a gain of 3.5 dBi (peak), SWR of less than 2 and beam pattern of 270°. In horizontal installations, the units offer a unity gain, SWR of less than 2 and beam pattern of 180°.

The introduction of similar antennas for PCS and other GSM applications is planned within the next several months. For additional information, contact Jeff Doria at Antennas America (303) 421-4063 or e-mail: doria@antennas.com.

Seamless Roaming a Reality for US and Mexico Mobile Telephone Subscribers
The CDMA Development Group has announced that cdmaOne customers in the US and Mexico now can roam seamlessly between the two countries on both PCS and cellular networks. GTE Wireless and Baja Celular formed a partnership in May 1998 that permits the handoff of calls in progress between cell sites in GTE's San Diego market and Baja's Tijuana service area. The service will benefit the 60,000 people who daily cross the world's busiest international border between San Diego and Tijuana.

PCS users will benefit from a recently announced roaming agreement between PCS Sprint and Mexico's Pegaso PCS that will bring nationwide access to Mexico and the US for subscribers of the two 100 percent digital/PCS carriers. The agreement will begin with San Diego/Tijuana coverage and expand as Pegaso PCS's network is installed across Mexico. 

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