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A recently published report by Dell'Oro Group, the trusted source for market information about the networking and telecommunications industries, indicates that the challenging macro economic environment is not preventing operators from building out their LTE networks. In contrast to the slowdown in sales momentum for the 2G/3G mobile Radio Access Network (RAN) equipment, the LTE market showed few signs of slowing down:

LTE RAN revenues up more than 160 percent versus 1Q11

More than 60 commercial LTE networks at the end of 1Q12

15 million LTE subscriptions at the end of 1Q12, up 70 percent Q/Q

TDD LTE markets commercialized in Japan

"With an LTE tablet that can be used by two-thirds of the US population, operators around the world are looking to the US as an example of the potential opportunities that can be realized with the combination of a high performance network, rich eco-system of popular devices, and price plans that promote the shift to LTE," said Stefan Pongratz, Senior Analyst at Dell'Oro Group. "And it is pretty clear at this point that the success story is spreading. There are now more than 80 countries committed to LTE. While 80 percent of the revenues in 1Q12 came from North America, Japan, and South Korea, this will clearly change in the future as more countries are awarded licenses to deploy LTE," continued Pongratz.

The report also reveals that Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent maintained the first and second spots in LTE revenue share while sales to Softbank Mobile's Wireless City Planning drove Huawei and ZTE into the first two spots in LTE TDD. It also shows that Samsung and NEC had the largest quarterly LTE revenue share increases. The report further discusses the near-term outlook for mobile RAN spend and the drivers of change in allocation across regions and technologies for 2012.