ZTE's US ban – or "special time" – is over, and it is ready to resume where it left off. As part of its goal to reengage with the market, the vendor has started to reach out to industry analysts, including those at Ovum.
ZTE is back. This wasn't always a certainty, but the company has successfully met the demands of the US government and now has access to the components needed to build its devices and network gear. When it comes to mobile infrastructure, ZTE wants to show that it is moving on from the ban, and it has several examples to support this claim.
Success starts with the RAN portfolio. Quality of the kit is a major factor in ensuring that success. Two of ZTE's clients achieved number one scoring in their markets for performance during the ban from third-party testing groups. One operator in South Africa came first on a P3 test and the other, in Belgium, verified by testing through Commsquare.
Product roadmap plays an important role as well, and ZTE's remains unchanged from earlier this year. The vendor continues to make progress on solutions to improve the performance of existing LTE networks and prepare for 5G with dual-band 4×4 radios, dynamic spectrum sharing, baseband units to support virtualized RAN architectures, and several different base station form factors designed specifically for difficult deployment scenarios. And although ZTE appears to have lost some business in Italy during the ban, it has picked up new RAN contracts since the ban was lifted, along with contracts for other areas (e.g. fixed networks).
ZTE's post-ban results have so far been positive. The vendor has been saying the right things. However, this doesn't mean that ZTE's work is done. The vendor must continue to reach out to its clients and other potential partners to reassure them that it remains a reliable partner.
"ZTE's woes and impact on the communications industry," SPT003-000015 (July 2018)
"Huawei retains top spot in 2017 RAN vendor market share," SPT002-000103 (June 2018)
Daryl Schoolar, Practice Leader, Next-Generation Infrastructure