Cloud, long haul drive 13% growth in optical comms sales

Following its acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent, Nokia debuts at #2, behind Chinese giant Huawei.

Worldwide optical network equipment spending was down 12% sequentially in the first quarter of 2016, reflecting a typical seasonal adjustment for the industry. However, the market achieved a 13% year-over-year increase that was anchored by accelerating 100G investment in long haul and metro applications. These are the headline conclusions of the latest market report published by analyst IHS Infonetics.

Long haul wavelength-division multiplexing spending was strong in the first quarter of 2016, growing 23% year-on-year. The 100G long haul market continues to be robust, commented IHS, with new projects in China and North America already underway and delivering significant revenue. Several vendors have noted that they see no letup in 100G long haul demand.

Sales of Metro WDM equipment saw solid gains in Q1 2016 as well, with an increase of 15% over the year-ago quarter. Data center expansion, public and private cloud adoption, preparation for broader introduction of 4K video and emerging virtual reality applications are expected to continue to drive the growth of bandwidth in the metro, the analyst commented.

However, considering optical communications technologies that appear to be on the wane, the IHS report says synchronous optical networking and synchronous digital hierarchy spending continues to decline, representing just 11% of the total optical equipment market in Q1 2016.