Mobile network operators will have to spend $840bn over the next five years to cope with the growing demand for data traffic, a market analyst says.
Juniper Research said existing backhaul networks, based on legacy technologies, are incapable of supporting the forecasted increase in both data users and data traffic.
The investment was needed to address serious bottlenecks in their backhaul networks, said report author Nitin Bhas.
The researcher said microwave and fibre will dominate the backhaul market, with microwave accounting for over 60% of the global mobile backhaul capacity by 2016.
“Microwave backhaul will be driven by high adoption levels in markets including Latin America, central and eastern Europe, the Indian subcontinent and the rest of Asia-Pacific,” said Bhas.
Bhas expected fibre to replace copper as the most popular medium for backhaul in North America, but India would use microwave for almost 90% of its backhaul traffic.