A new report from LightCounting, 2021 Access Optics Report and Forecast, says that sales of PON optics will exceed US$3 billion, and sales of grey and WDM transceivers for fronthaul will account for another US$2.9 billion from 2022-2026, with the balance being for backhaul and midhaul applications. It adds that the market for optics for access networks will exceed US$7.5 billion cumulatively over the next five years. These figures are set against a backdrop of fragmentation of the access market which includes RAN, FTTX, hybrid Distributed Access Architecture through to Low Earth Orbit Satellites.
LightCounting notes that even within just one type of access network – Fibre-to-the-X – choices abound, and new variations are being developed, with currently available flavours including GPON, EPON, 10G-EPON, XG-PON2, XGS-PON, NG-PON2, and some pre-standard 25G and 50G PONs. For providers of optical components, the plethora of choices, and the ongoing search for new and better access technologies poses a serious challenge. Backing all of the current and future technologies is expensive and choosing just one incorrectly leads to poor returns on investment.
The analyst firm predicts that during the forecast period, 25G and 50G PON standards will be finalised, new fronthaul architectures will be developed, and LEOS satellite providers will wage a serious competitive battle against the entrenched internet providers of the past two decades. In addition, governments are taking renewed interest in promoting and providing financial support to boost the deployment of broadband, especially in hard to reach or under-served areas. All of which has an impact the number and type of optical transceivers sold in a given year.
For more information, visit www.lightcounting.com