Daily Video: 802.11ac, Hotspot 2.0 Fuel Carrier WiFi Revenue Growth

Today's topics include a report on the growth of the carrier WiFi equipment market, a new player in the minicomputer market, declining smartphone shipments in China and IBM's collaboration with app development tool maker Ionic.

The carrier WiFi equipment market is continuing to see rapid growth due in large part to such technologies as 802.11ac and Hotspot 2.0, as well as the increasing demand for such applications as data analytics, according to analysts at Infonetics Research.

In a recent report, Infonetics analysts said that revenue for the global carrier WiFi equipment market jumped to $336 million in the second half of 2014, a 23 percent increase over the first half. For the full year, revenue in 2014 grew 16 percent over 2013. The analysts expect even stronger growth in 2015 with estimates that WiFi equipment revenue will increase by 88 percent. The market will continue to expand over the coming years, analysts predict.

Minicomputers from the likes of Intel, Dell, Google and the Raspberry Pi Foundation could see even more competition from a small California company that is looking to build a tiny $9 computer. The Next Thing Co., which builds the hackable OTTO GIF camera, had sought $50,000 through Kickstarter to launch the CHIP computer, which is about the size of a credit card and comes with an ARM-based 1GHz processor, 512MB of memory and 4GB of storage. With 25 days left in the fundraising drive, Next Thing has raised more than $717,000, as of May 11.

Smartphone shipments in China dropped 4 percent in the first quarter of 2015, compared with the same quarter one year ago, which is the first falloff in sales there in six years. What that means, according to a new research report from IDC, is that China's smartphone market is maturing as more and more people there now have smartphones, causing sales to slow.

IBM and Ionic announced an agreement to combine the drag-and-drop design capabilities of Ionic with the IBM MobileFirst Platform. Ionic markets its apps design tools to business users who want to prototype enterprise-ready apps in minutes—with no prior programming knowledge or coding experience—and benefit from open-source technology to further accelerate the creation of mobile apps.

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