Week in Research: UAE's 2 telecoms make odd bedfellows; BT among top 3 EMEA business VoIP providers

Telecom in a two-horse town: The United Arab Emirates has one of the most advanced markets in the Middle East, yet a restrictive environment means the country has only two operators--Etisalat and du--across all sectors and no foreign investors, Research and Markets points out in its latest study, United Arab Emirates - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband. It's an odd situation in which the majority government-owned operators both compete and cooperate with each other (both plan to share each other's fixed and wireless networks). A fluid expatriate population drives much of its wireless penetration (above 200 percent), and Fiber to the Home (FTTH) reach is increasing rapidly, yet 50 percent of the UAE's residential Internet subscribers still use dial-up to access the Internet. News release.

Business VoIP: T-Systems, BT, and Vodafone are the top business VoIP service providers among some 100 competing in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), Infonetics Research reports in its latest Leadership Matrix. In particular, providers with IP Centrex seats in the region have the edge in subscriber numbers, with most approaching or past 100,000 seats. News release.

A familiar trend: Fixed-line voice market revenues in New Zealand are expected to decline at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 7 percent between 2009 and 2015, Research and Markets in its latest regional forecast. A similar picture is painted for Hong Kong, whose fixed voice revenues will decline at a CAGR of 5 percent in the same period.

Router sales rise: The equipment market continues to look up, as the Dell'Oro Group forecasts heavy investment in routers as service providers expand their broadband offerings. The router market will grow by more than 60 percent over the next five years and will reach $11.6 billion by 2014. News release.

Optical networking: About half of all service providers plan to use IPoDWDM (IP over Dense Wavelength-Division Multiplexing) and/or OTN (Optical Transport Network) on routers this year, a number expected to grow to 70 percent by 2012, says Infonetics Research. "The main driver for IPoDWDM is cost savings by using less expensive colored optics on routers instead of expensive OEO transponders on both ends of the router-DWDM connection," notes Michael Howard, principal analyst and co-founder of Infonetics Research. News release.

Infonetics OTN routers market

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