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Infonetics: Optical Gear Spending Flat in 4Q13 as North America Sags and EMEA Surges

Market research firm Infonetics Research released vendor market share and preliminary analysis from its 4th quarter 2013 (4Q13) and year-end Optical Network Hardware report. (Full report published by February 24.)


“Optical spending flattened in the fourth quarter of 2013, though it wasn’t distributed evenly around the world or by vendor. Weakness was concentrated in North America, but a year-end capex surge in EMEA evened things up,” notes Andrew Schmitt, principal analyst for optical at Infonetics Research.

Schmitt adds: “All indications are that an all-clear from Verizon and AT&T is forthcoming and the Q4 drop was a pause rather than a reversal — and this is in line with our forecasts.”


  • Worldwide optical network hardware revenue, including WDM and SONET/SDH, was essentially flat in 4Q13, totaling $3.1 billion
  • For the full year 2013, the overall optical network hardware market is down 3%
  • On a positive note, the WDM segment posted a 6th consecutive quarter of growth in 4Q13 and ended the full year 2013 up 11% as 100G deployments hit the ground
  • Though the traditional 4Q capex flush was in full effect in EMEA, the region recorded a 5th straight year of spending declines; Infonetics expects EMEA to revert back to being a third of global spending within 1–2 years
  • The Chinese optical market closed 2013 up only 6%, but performance is anticipated to improve in 2014 as 100G rollouts pick up steam
  • EMEA optical heavyweights Alcatel-Lucent, Ciena, Coriant, and Huawei all had a big 4Q13


Join analyst Andrew Schmitt and JDSU, MRV, and Transmode on Wednesday, February 19, for 100G in the Metro: When and Where It Will Be Economical, a live event covering new approaches and technologies for cost-effectively deploying 100G in the metro. Register today:


Infonetics’ quarterly optical hardware report provides worldwide and regional market size, market share, forecasts through 2018, analysis, and trends for metro and long haul SONET/SDH and WDM equipment, Ethernet optical ports, SONET/SDH/POS ports, and WDM ports. Vendors tracked: Adva, Alcatel-Lucent, Ciena, Cisco, Cyan, ECI, Fujitsu, Huawei, Infinera, NEC, Coriant, Tellabs, Transmode, Tyco Telecom, ZTE, and others. To buy the report, contact Infonetics:



Download Infonetics’ 2014 market research brochure, publication calendar, events brochure, report highlights, tables of contents, and more at


Visit to register for upcoming webinars, view recent webinars on demand, or learn about sponsoring a webinar.

  • 100G in the Metro: When and Where It Will Be Economical (Feb. 19: Attend)
  • The Roadmap for the ROADM Network Expansion (Apr. 8: Learn more)
  • All About Edge P-OTS (View on-demand)
  • Coherent Optics: Cheaper, Better, Faster (July: Sponsor)
  • Building More Efficient Networks with Multi-Layer Packet-Optical (Oct.: Sponsor)


N. America (West), Asia Pacific: Larry Howard, [email protected], +1 408-583-3335

N. America (East, Midwest), L. America: Scott Coyne, [email protected], +1 408-583-3395

EMEA, India, Singapore: George Stojsavljevic, [email protected], +44 755-488-1623

Japan, South Korea, China, Taiwan:


Infonetics Research ( is an international market research and consulting firm serving the communications industry since 1990. A leader in defining and tracking emerging and established technologies in all world regions, Infonetics helps clients plan, strategize, and compete effectively. View Infonetics’ About Us slides at

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