The total number of WiFi-enabled device shipments worldwide will exceed 1.5 billion this year, according to ABI Research. That’s almost double the number of WiFi devices shipped in 2010. In total, over 9 billion WiFi-enabled devices have been shipped since 2009.
Growth in the WiFi equipment market was initially driven by networking, although ABI Research says smartphones have now become the largest part of the market. A key growth area is now the connected home, with WiFi-enabled ‘smart’ television shipments rising from 17 million last year to 30 million this year - and continuing growth predicted for the next five years.
Peter Cooney, wireless connectivity practice director at ABI Research, said “Wi-Fi is expected to become ubiquitous in coming years, not only to allow wireless Internet access, but mainly as consumers increasingly demand wireless connections between TVs and other devices such as smartphones and media tablets. The forthcoming Wi-Fi display specification or Miracast, will further drive Wi-Fi attach rates in the connected home as consumers embrace the technology.”
Broadcom, Qualcomm, MediaTek, Marvell, Intel and Texas Instruments accounted for over 85% of total market revenues in 2011.