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News recap: LTE-Advanced, VoLTE drive mobile infrastructure markets

In telecom news, LTE and VoLTE drive global mobile infrastructure markets; FCC chairman wants to reduce robocalls and texts; Ericsson considers a large acquisition.

This week in telecom news, ACG Research determined that LTE and Voice over LTE (VoLTE) are the driving forces behind global mobile infrastructure markets. ACG sees the mobile infrastructure as highly dynamic over the next several years as carriers get ready to deploy new wireless technologies.

The chairman of the FCC has made it clear he wants to eliminate robocalls, and on June 18, the FCC will vote on a proposal that would give legal permission to telephone companies to offer technologies to prevent the calls. Also, Ericsson AB said it will consider making a large networking acquisition.

LTE and VoLTE drive of mobile infrastructure markets

Worldwide mobile infrastructure market revenue decreased in Q1 and year over year even though global revenue reached $87.4 billion, according to ACG Research. Mobile broadband sales were driven primarily by radio technologies, specifically 4G wireless Long Term Evolution (LTE). The market downturn is due to Ericsson's decline in North America because most operators have completed their LTE deployments, ACG said, adding that it anticipates increasing data traffic could lead to further upgrades of U.S. wireless networks to LTE.

3G wireless technology continues to grow in developing economies, according to ACG, and operators' current trials with different forms of 4G LTE could reduce spending until mobile network operators (MNOs) understand their added value. In the U.S., ACG expects wireless operators will opt for further upgrades to LTE's successor, LTE-Advanced.

ACG sees mobile infrastructure as highly dynamic over the next several years as carriers get ready to offer new technologies including Voice over LTE, network functions virtualization (NFV), small cells and millimeter wave backhaul.

FCC vote scheduled on reduced robocalls

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler has made it clear he wants to make it more difficult for telemarketers and other businesses to place robocalls and send unwanted texts to consumers. On June 18, the FCC will vote on a proposal to change federal autodialiing rules to give legal permission to telephone companies to offer technologies to prevent their customers from receiving these calls and texts, Reuters reported.

Wireless carriers have worried that blocking these calls could violate the law requiring that all calls be placed over the network to reach the intended recipients. In the last year, more than 215,000 robocalls and texts have been reported to the FCC, the commission's most common consumer complaint.

The proposal asserts that consumers have to agree to receive automated calls and texts with the understanding that they can revoke their consent in any "reasonable" way, including a simple request for calls to stop, without the need to file complex paperwork.

U.S. law prohibits telemarketing calls to both landline and cellphones of consumers who have not given written consent.

The new proposal would facilitate a process to enable people to eliminate unwanted calls with a simple request.

Consumer advocates and a majority of U.S. states attorneys are backing Wheeler on the issue.

Ericsson to consider larger acquisitions

In the wake of Nokia's $16.6 billion purchase of Alcatel-Luna, Swedish wireless giant Ericsson AB has said the company is open to an acquisition of similar proportions, Bloomberg reported. Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg plans to meet with managers this month to discuss a plan that would shift the company's focus on acquiring smaller companies to one that considers larger deals.

In a statement, Ericsson chairman Leif Johansson said under the right circumstances, he would welcome a larger deal.

Telecom carriers expanding to wireless, broadband and video access are seeking vendors that can build networks for all services and provide a broad range of products, according to Bloomberg.

Last year, Ericsson considered making a bid for Alcatel-Lucent but didn't out of concern that the deal wouldn't be as beneficial as originally expected.

Sanford C. Bernstein telecom research analyst Pierre Ferragu, said Juniper Networks and Ciena Corp. would be a perfect fit for Ericsson.

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