Our keen investigation of Wi-Fi’s growth in wireless industry continues today, with news from In-Stat stating that the global Wi-Fi chipset market is coming along nicely due partially to dual-mode handset growth. Although dual-mode cellular/Wi-Fi handsets represented only 3% of total shipments in 2006, In-Stat indicates they will reach 20% of the total chipset market by 2009. Not a bad slice of the pie, by any means.
“Dual-mode cellular/Wi-Fi handsets are pushing hard into the market in 2007, with handset vendors Nokia and HTC really leveraging Wi-Fi as an alternative high-speed broadband connectivity option,” says Gemma Tedesco, In-Stat analyst. “Wi-Fi for voice is expected to pick up this year, with T-Mobile’s nationwide FMC roll-out in the US.”
* In 2006, 213 million Wi-Fi chipsets shipped out worldwide, representing a 32% growth rate over 2005 shipments.
* A notable market sub-segment to watch in 2007 is the portable media player market, with Microsoft’s Zune ramping up, and a Wi-Fi-enabled Apple iPod scheduled to hit shelves in the second half of 2007.
* Although 802.11n is expected to provide for +100Mbps, In-Stat expects Wi-Fi uptake in device categories such as DTVs and set-top boxes to be very slow.