Telecommunications equipment

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Telecommunications equipment (also telecoms equipment or communications equipment) is hardware used for the purposes of telecommunications. Since the 1990s the boundary between telecoms equipment and IT hardware has become blurred as a result of the growth of the internet and its increasing role in the transfer of telecoms data.[1][2]


Telecommunications equipment can be broadly broken down into the following categories:[3]


The world's five largest telecommunications equipment (excluding mobile phone handsets) vendors, 2015 revenues are:

  1. Sweden Ericsson
  2. Finland Nokia Networks ( France Alcatel-Lucent )
  3. China Huawei Technologies
  4. United States Cisco Systems
  5. China ZTE Corporation

The world's five largest router and switch vendor leadership: Global Service Provider Survey, June 2015:

  1. United States Cisco Systems
  2. Finland Nokia Networks ( France Alcatel-Lucent )
  3. United States Juniper Networks
  4. China Huawei Technologies
  5. China ZTE Corporation

The world's 10 largest mobile phone handset vendors measured by unit sales in the second quarter of 2013 are (global market share shown in parentheses):[4]

  1. South Korea Samsung (24.7%)
  2. United States Microsoft Mobile (14.0%)
  3. United States Apple (7.3%)
  4. South Korea LG Electronics (3.9%)
  5. China ZTE Corporation (3.5%)
  6. China Huawei Technologies (2.6%)
  7. China Lenovo (2.5%)
  8. China TCL (2.3%)
  9. Japan Sony Mobile Communications (2.2%)
  10. China Yulong (1.8%)

As of 2014 many of the largest telecoms networking equipment vendors are struggling financially due to over supply, rising market share of China-based vendors, and declining revenues for 2G and 3G networks not being fully offset by the growing market for 4G equipment.[5][6]

Used telecommunications equipment

As telecommunications equipment technology rapidly evolves, operators are being forced to look at used and refurbished telecommunications equipment for alternative, cheaper options to maintain their networks. The used telecommunications market has expanded rapidly in the last decade with used and refurbished equipment offering cheaper equipment supply, offering legacy and end of life equipment being refurbished to support platforms already being used by global telecom operators. As equipment is discontinued, operators and end users often look for sparing as parts become harder to source.[7]

See also


  1. "Telecoms equipment - We have the technology". The Economist. 1 October 1998. Retrieved 21 July 2012. 
  2. "Twisted pair - Nokia and Siemens pool their network divisions to form a new firm". The Economist. 22 June 2006. Retrieved 21 July 2012. 
  3. Ypsilanti, Dimitri; Plantin, Amy (1991). Telecommunications Equipment: Changing Markets and Trade Structures. OECD Publishing. p. 16. ISBN 9789264135536. 
  4. "Gartner Says Smartphone Sales Grew 46.5 Percent in Second Quarter of 2013 and Exceeded Feature Phone Sales for First Time". Gartner. 14 August 2013. Retrieved 13 October 2013. 
  5. "Toughing it out - The future will be difficult for incumbent telecoms-equipment makers, but things are not as bad as they look". The Economist. 25 October 2007. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 
  6. "Analysis : No boom for telco equipment firms in 4G revolution". Reuters. 17 July 2012. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 
  7. "Why Buy Refurbished Telecom Equipment?". DTC International Ltd. 20 March 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2015.