Wireless operators will triple the number of distributed antenna systems (DAS) in service between 2015 and 2018, according to a study from technology research firm IHS, which interviewed 16 of the top 20 telecom operators globally that operate DAS systems.
DAS systems are typically used is major venues with areas of challenging indoor coverage and heavy data traffic, such as stadiums, casinos, malls and airports.
Another key finding of the study is that operators are moving from passive to active architectures and replacing repeaters with low-power remote radio heads.
Stephane Teral, research director for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics at IHS said that as mobile networks migrate from 2G to 3G to LTE, DAS architectures are evolving from passive to active. And repeaters are replaced with low-power remote radio heads connected through fiber-optic cable to the DAS hub. Teral noted this resembles today's C-RAN macro architectures found in places like South Korea and China.
The study also found that 88 percent of respondents use the carrier-owned DAS model. In addition, improving indoor coverage is the top driver of DAS with deployment costs being the leading barrier.
Survey respondents see Axell Communications, CommScope and TE Connectivity as the top providers of DAS solutions. Other DAS providers mentioned were Comba, CommScope, Corning MobileAccess, Dali Wireless, Ericsson, JMA Wireless, Kathrein-Werke KG and Solid.
ABI Research last fall forecasted the size of the indoor DAS market to nearly double by 2019, with growth in North America leading the way.
- see this release
Verizon increases wireless coverage in the New York subway, as multiple subway systems move to boost coverage
Westell Technologies' ClearLink DAS addresses "near-far" data problem