The global small cell 5G network market size was valued at USD 967 million in 2021. It is expected to reach USD 24,640 million by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 43.3% during the forecast period (2022-2030).
A small cell is a base station with low power and a short range that can serve a small geographic region or indoor and outdoor applications. It has all the essential qualities of a typical base station and can handle high data rates for individual users. Delivering high-speed mobile broadband and other low-latency applications during the 5G rollout is crucial. Regarding data speed, reliability, and latency requirements, 5G technology must overcome several issues. It takes advantage of the small cell idea to provide a higher bandwidth signal and increase user coverage. Indoor coverage with macro base stations is problematic, especially when metallic constructions block the network signals. Due to the prevalence of the necessity for indoor coverage and large venues like stadiums, where capacity is a significant problem, small cell systems are the best option.
The spread of the pandemic and the rising trend of remote work propel the adoption of 5G networks across all industries. As a result, market growth is anticipated to pick up during the projection period. The development of the worldwide small cell 5G network market is also aided by factors like the expansion of network densification, an increase in mobile data traffic, and the appearance of the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) band. However, the development of the small cell 5G network market is anticipated to be hampered by worries about small cell backhaul and deployment issues.
Growing Network Densification and Mobile Data Traffic
To achieve substantially higher data throughput, from megabits per second (Mbps) to gigabits per second (Gbps), and ultra-reliable reduced latency, from tens of milliseconds to milliseconds, network densification is a crucial component of the deployment of 5G architecture. The deployment of more cell sites, including macro sites, radio access networks, in-building wireless, and small cells, increases the available network capacity and is a critical component of network densification, which is essential for the success of 5G deployment. The best places to build up networks will be close to urban regions and significant gathering places where there are more digital users.
To meet the continued demand for high-speed and reliable connectivity from digital consumers, network densification is crucial for 5G. To retain optimal connectivity, networks must deliver speed ten times quicker than 4G/LTE. Additionally, it has been observed that the adoption of digital services such as autonomous vehicles and remote surgeries has substantially increased, increasing demand for more robust connectivity and faster speed and propelling the global market's expansion.
Internet material is transported to different mobile consumer electronics, such as smartphones and tablets, through mobile data traffic. The industry is expanding due to the worldwide increase in mobile data traffic. By 2024, it is anticipated that global mobile traffic will have increased by 5, totaling 136EB each month. Thus, the demand for technologically advanced telecommunication networks is projected to rise significantly due to the noticeable increase in mobile data traffic. The market for small cell 5G networks is anticipated to be driven by a rise in network upgrading needs due to the exponential growth in mobile data traffic. Customers will benefit from good network quality thanks to the rollout of the 5G network.
Issue Concerning Fiber Backhaul
Deploying fiber backhaul networks for small cells to enable low latency and high data rates is a critical problem for operators due to the restricted availability of fiber networks in many countries. In some countries, installing fiber backhaul is also not cost-effective, so operators should consider wireless backhaul options. Where this is the case, a variety of wireless technologies, including mmWave, PMP, and satellite, should be considered in addition to fiber. These solutions aid businesses in overcoming backhaul difficulties and fostering the expansion of the small cell market.
The Advent of the Internet of Things
Although 4G IoT solutions are being deployed to satisfy IoT demands, they are best for applications with modest latency, bandwidth, and reliability constraints. Current 4G IoT performance and scalability are lower than 5G targets but enough to create a new connection and business models. Small cells, which can be installed at high densities, will be crucial for supporting 5G IoT use cases. Additionally, they are the best option for supporting the 5G networks built on millimeter waves' short propagation range. Soon, there will be a greater need for 5G infrastructure to support IoT use cases like massive IoT, which calls for high connection densities of up to one million devices per square kilometer with low per-device data rates and is anticipated to present profitable opportunities for the growth of the global market.
The global small cell 5G network market is analyzed across the component, radio technology, frequency band, cell type, application, end-user, and region.
Per the component, the fragments are solutions and services.
The solution section is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 41.73%. Small cell 5G network solutions are software-based applications, including network monitoring, LTE, and Wi-Fi convergence. Small cell 5G solutions are utilized to incorporate a network's technology. As a result, the need for small cell 5G solutions has increased due to their capacity to converge diverse hyperdense network topologies into advanced, scalable systems.
The service section will hold the second-largest share. 5G small cell network services include consultancy, integration & deployment, and training & support. The majority of industry verticals choose all-inclusive package solutions for service transitions. Due to its potential to boost operator network capacity across various locations and addresses, the rise in digital transformation has accelerated the deployment of small cell 5G networks across multiple industry verticals.
Per radio technology, the fragments are standalone and non-standalone.
The standalone section is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 49.85%. High mobile phone penetration and increasing customer demand for high-definition content compel network service providers to transition from 2G, 3G, and 4G services to 5G. Small cells are typically employed in wireless indoor coverage solutions. Thus, transformation to 5G networks offers advantages such as increased capacity, which enables faster delivery of internet services, and an increase in the number of users with network access.
The non-standalone section will hold the second-largest share. This sort of deployment is anticipated to develop significantly due to its smooth integration with the existing infrastructure. The rise of the non-standalone small cell 5G network market is driven by the rapid digital transformation of numerous industrial verticals and the expansion of government initiatives for connected networks.
Per the frequency band, the fragments are low band, mid band, and millimeter wave (high band).
The millimeter wave section is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 50%. Above 24GHz, a millimeter wave (mmWave) dominates the spectrum. The 28GHz band is commonly referred to as the 5G spectrum and is expected to release approximately five gigahertz of the 5G spectrum worldwide. The term mmWave refers to its wavelength span from around 10 millimeters to 1 millimeter. Vast application areas for mmWave, such as sports and concert stadiums, convention centers, and other congested environments, drive market expansion.
The mind-band section will hold the second-largest share. Mid-band spectrum gives 5G balanced coverage and enhanced capacity. These mid bands often operate on the 2.5 GHz, 3.5 GHz, and 3.7-4.2 GHz bands. With the increase of 4G installations and subscriber data speeds, the exponential value of 10 kbps to several megabits per second has expanded from several megabits per second to hundreds of megabits per second, enhancing the segment.
Per the cell type, the fragments are femtocells, picocells, and microcells.
The femtocells segment is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 38.3%. A femtocell is a device that functions as a small cellular base station and similarly to a router. The architecture of a femtocell permits the placement of many antennas around the area, thereby providing the required network connectivity without interfering with the femtocell network signal and mitigating the effects of interfering obstacles.
The picocells segment will hold the second-largest share. A pico cell has an operating radius of 100 to 300 meters and a power amplifier range of 250 mW >2 W. This cell is favored as an alternative to dispersed antenna systems or repeaters and is extensively employed as a compact cellular base station. In addition, a picocell functions as a small base station, an alternative to a repeater or distributed antenna system.
Per the application, the fragments are indoor application and outdoor application.
The indoor application section is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 42.3%. The rising rate of small cell 5G network adoption in smart homes and offices is a key driver driving market growth. The capacity of small cells to serve smaller areas with greater bandwidth is increasing their demand for indoor applications.
The outdoor section will hold the second-largest share. Outdoor applications include public venues that require excellent connectivity, such as public transportation and shopping centers. As the small cell micro radio series provides unified mobility for end users going in and out of small cell coverage zones, small cell use in outdoor applications is anticipated to increase significantly.
Per the end-user, the fragments are residential, commercial, industrial, smart city, transportation and logistics, government and defense, and others.
The commercial sector is forecasted to hold the largest share, growing at a CAGR of 37.31%. Due to an increase in BOYD penetration and 5G infrastructure developments, the commercial segment experienced the most remarkable revenue growth in 2019. In addition, the surge in digitalization and positive 5G government measures to digitalize business processes are the primary drivers of global economic expansion.
The industrial sector will hold the second-largest share. Rapid industrial digitization and the emergence of Industry 4.0 are important drivers that are anticipated to increase the adoption of tiny cells by industrial end users. In addition, a surge in demand for wireless communications in industrial operations and an increase in the adoption of wireless services across numerous industry verticals significantly contribute to expanding the market.
The region-wise segmentation of the small cell 5G network market includes North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.
The Asia Pacific will likely command the market while expanding at a CAGR of 48.11%. With the introduction of tiny cells for 5G networks, the mobile cellular industry in Asia-Pacific is deploying various technological and commercial solutions. This is crucial in this region's adoption of tiny cell 5G networks. China's state-owned mobile carriers, including China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom, have invested in a 5G national action plan to coordinate their industry's research & development and deployment activities with the help of the central government.
The Chinese Academy of Information and Communication Technologies, which researches on behalf of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, estimates that between 2020 and 2030, domestic 5G networks will receive investments totaling about USD 437.7 billion. The region with the highest smartphone adoption is forcing wireless network service providers to introduce 5G technology into their networks due to the demand for higher bandwidth applications. As a result, innovation has increased, and sustainable and economic networks are widely adopted. Additionally, many countries in the region have advanced with industrial transformation programs, emphasizing 5G deployments.
North America is forecasted to have a shareholding of USD 7,999 million, growing at a CAGR of 38.2%. The small cell 5G network market is very competitive in North America, with many essential competitors. Due to the high rate of strategic trials to introduce 5G technologies and apparatus in this area, the market is growing. Additionally, the usage of tiny cells has increased due to the North American countries' well-developed network infrastructure. Due to the infrastructure of North American countries' capacity to easily integrate these devices, it is known that these regions have the highest adoption rates for small cell technology and gadgets.
For instance, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco in 2020 mostly upheld the FCC's three directives from 2018 to speed up 5G installations, which included deploying as many as 800,000 small cells for 5G networks. Additionally, a rise in the need for high bandwidth networks from a variety of national mobile operators and neutral host operators has fueled the expansion of the small cells 5G network industry in the area. The regional mobile carriers are consistently gravitating toward developments in more significant port-count antennas. This prompted the creation of microcell BTS antennas, which are anticipated to accelerate the uptake of small cells.
List of key small cell 5G network market companies
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