Commercial Market

Recreational GPS Report Released

Frost & Sullivan has released an update to report 5332-22, "North American Global Positioning Systems Applications Markets." This stand-alone segment analysis addresses the recreational portion of the market, including marine, land and private aviation. In general, the discussion is limited to units costing less than $1000 (although aviation units may exceed this price). The update includes projected sales of specific companies in the market and focuses on specific market trends, including price (which in many cases has dropped below $200 per hand-held unit and may drop below $150 in the next few years); cross-segment marketing, including the transfer of products between applications; usability affected by the combination of hardware and software as well as ergonomic functionality; reliability; status marketing as affected by price, value and status premium; and bundling, including the trend to build the products into the platform to be used. Technological trends discussed include antenna design, signal reception, maps, display technologies, wide area augmentation systems (WAAS), and GPS and wireless communications links.

The recreational GPS market participants mentioned  in the study include Magellan Systems Corp., Garmin International, Lowrance/Eagle Electronics, Apelco/Raytheon Marine Co., Trimble Navigation, Micrologic, Si-Tex Marine Electronics, II Morrow, Bendix-King, Northstar Technologies, Narco Avionics and Terra. The strategic analysis and forecasts address market overviews and definitions, revenue forecasts, competitive analysis and market share, product analysis, market trends and liability for the marine, land and aviation recreational areas. For additional information, contact Frost & Sullivan at (650) 961-9000.

China Unicom to Invest $843 M for CDMA Network

China Daily's Business Weekly reports that China Unicom, a small rival to the state-owned giant China Telecom, will select several foreign systems suppliers to provide equipment for its planned CDMA technology mobile telephony network. The company plans to invest $843 M to establish a nationwide CDMA network with an initial capacity of two million lines this year. The capacity is expected to expand to 10 million lines in 2000. Motorola and Lucent Technologies along with Samsung and Nortel currently have contracts for a small-scale trial providing limited CDMA services in several Chinese cites. China's Ministry of Information has authorized Unicom to acquire these trial systems.

To date, the European-based GSM system has cornered China's digital mobile market, which reportedly adds one million subscribers each month. However, CDMA approval is expected to create a huge new market for manufacturers in the US where CDMA technology dominates cellular telephone use. According to China's World Trade Organization (WTO) entry commitments, Beijing has promised to phase out all geographic restrictions for mobile/cellular services within five years of WTO accession. China, which currently prohibits foreign investment in telecommunications services, will allow 49 percent foreign investment in all services and 51 percent foreign ownership for value-added and paging services within four years. However, faltering US-China relations following the NATO bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade earlier this year could delay or suspend all of these activities.

Projects Worth $80 B Planned/Proposed for ATM

Allied Business Intelligence has released a new report, "Air Traffic Management Systems: Changes and Opportunities in Global ATC Equipment Markets," which evaluates the size of the air traffic control (ATC) equipment market over the next decade and identifies more than $80 B in planned and proposed projects. The need to transition air traffic management (ATM) to a new level of performance is driven by increasing air traffic that is straining capacities and safety envelopes in the airspaces of the most developed regions of the world. In developing regions, particularly China, economic growth is causing rapid installation of ATM infrastructures. The global market for radar systems is expected to expand from $2 B to $4 B per year in less than 10 years.

A more quickly growing market is ATM software, which is expected to reach $2 B in five years. This market is driven by flexibly programmed commercial computer systems and the flow of data streams from a variety of sensor systems. Early successes with GPS signals for navigation have made GPS the cornerstone of new ATM management architectures. Likewise, early Federal Aviation Administration results with differential GPS trials have led to the deployment of a WAAS that was expected to be operational in North America in 1998. Near-term developments will take the system to Category I precision. The report discusses why and where the system will be deployed.

An enhancement to aircraft Mode S avionics turns them into GPS squitters, the backbone system for automatic dependence surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B). This process, coupled with voice and data switches, puts communication-navigation surveillance (CNS/ATM) at the threshold of realization. The reasons for delays in ADS-B implementation are examined and the size of the market for CNS/ATM-enabling technologies is quantified. (These delays also impact the rate of conversion from airport surveillance radar to secondary surveillance radar scans.) The report also discusses the conversion from instrument landing systems to the less expensive local area augmentation system (LAAS). Precision runway monitors (PRM) furnish safe, simultaneous parallel runway use. Until LAAS is available, PRMs will experience relatively strong market growth. For additional information, contact Tim Archdeacon, Allied Business Intelligence (516) 624-3113 or e-mail:

Next-century Satellite Communications Study Released

A new report, "Satellite Communications for the Next Century: Global Markets for GMPCS, LEOs, MEOs and GEOs 1999-2004," has been released by The Insight Research Corp. The report is motivated by the fact that 50 percent of the world's population does not have access to a telephone. By 2000, more than 60 percent of the world's population still will not have access to terrestrial wireless service let alone broadband data communications service. Global Mobile Personal Communications via Satellite (GMPCS) offers a unique technical solution to the limitations of existing terrestrial and celestial networks and provides messaging, voice and data communications directly to the end user. The system, operating from a constellation of satellites, is able to reach anyone, anywhere, anytime. GMPCS networks will provide basic and enhanced services to all regions of the world, thus offering the potential for true universal service.

The hard reality is considered that telecommunications services today consist of islands of sophisticated terrestrial telecommunications infrastructure located primarily in North America, western Europe and the Pacific Rim, which serve less than 40 percent of the world's population. If an individual does not live in the right part of the world or travels outside of the developed countries, he or she is essentially a nonparticipant in the information age. Intense, unmet demand exists on the part of these prospective users for messaging, narrowband and wideband telecommunications services. The study takes a short- and long-term view of existing and planned GMPCS networks, cost and revenue projections as well as economic, technical and regulatory issues, which will help or hinder the future of satellite systems. For additional information, contact The Insight Research Corp. (973) 605-1400 or fax (973) 605-1440.