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Cat6 Flagship Phone Offerings Boost LTE Mobile Handset Baseband Revenue, IHS Says

Mobile Handset Baseband Revenue By Technology
Mobile Handset Baseband Revenue By Technology

With the potential to benefit many different parties in the mobile ecosystem, the category 6 (Cat6) long-term evolution (LTE) standard has begun to emerge as a differentiating feature in both high-end and mid-range smartphones. Alongside the shift toward Cat6, more entry-level smartphones are being equipped with LTE and more vendors are offering solutions focused on this product tier, according to IHS Inc. (NYSE: IHS), the leading global source of critical information and insight. In fact LTE mobile handset baseband revenue grew 26 percent year over year in the second quarter of 2015, while overall revenue from older technologies continued to decline.

With their widespread adoption of Cat6 LTE, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are providing added value to operators, semiconductor suppliers and consumers. Mobile operators will gain an advantage from more efficient networks as well as new branding opportunities from LTE-A networks. Suppliers providing modems, radio frequency integrated circuits (RFICs) and radio-frequency (RF) front-end content are especially poised to benefit from the progression to Cat6 LTE, according to the IHS Wireless Semiconductor Competitive Intelligence Service. Growth in the baseband market is coming from LTE, and low-cost suppliers are also ramping up efforts to grab market share in the growing segment.

"Flagship phone offerings from OEMs in 2015 increasingly include the defining characteristic of Cat6-enabled modems,” said Brad Shaffer, senior analyst for mobile devices and networks for IHS Technology. “Faster mobile devices will benefit the consumer through faster downloads, fewer interruptions during real time applications and increased battery life.”

“The entry-level LTE market is beginning to fill with cost-sensitive LTE solutions from Spreadtrum Communications and other firms,” Shaffer said. “Having Cat6 or higher LTE-A modems has, therefore, become a necessity for companies looking to maintain or grow market share in the mid-range and high-end smartphone markets.”

IHS Wireless Semiconductor Competitive Intelligence Service provides deep insight and analysis on the rapidly shifting core chipset supplier landscape across a range of mobile devices from wireless infrastructure, mobile broadband devices and handsets. For information about subscribing, contact the sales department at IHS in the Americas at +1 844 301 7334 or; in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at +44 1344 328 300 or; or Asia-Pacific (APAC) at +604 291 3600 or


About IHS (

IHS (NYSE: IHS) is the leading source of insight, analytics and expertise in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Businesses and governments in more than 150 countries around the globe rely on the comprehensive content, expert independent analysis and flexible delivery methods of IHS to make high-impact decisions and develop strategies with speed and confidence. IHS has been in business since 1959 and became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, USA, IHS is committed to sustainable, profitable growth and employs about 8,800 people in 32 countries around the world.

IHS is a registered trademark of IHS Inc. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. © 2015 IHS Inc. All rights reserved.

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