The U.S. fiber optics market size accounted for USD 2.65 billion in 2017 and is expected to grow at a steady pace through 2025. Fiber optic cables are replacing metal wires owing to their higher efficiency and reliability. These cables are majorly used for data transmission as their output is only minutely affected by internal and external environmental factors. Remote sensing technique allows it to transmit data over remote locations. This is expected to drive the U.S. fiber optics market over the forecast period.
U.S. fiber optics market revenue split, by type, 2017 (% share)
Optical technology has gained prominence over the past few years, owing to rising number of research and development activities and escalating demand for high bandwidth communication and data services.
Constant innovation, in terms of efficient utilization and productivity, are expected to augment market growth. The market is majorly driven by the pursuit of high bandwidth communication, along with increasing government funding for development of network infrastructure. Manufacturers are focusing on introducing new products to meet rising demand from different industries. For instance, tactical cable fiber by General Cable is specially designed for applications such as military, oil, and industrial. These specially advanced optical fibers are UV protected, lightweight, highly flexible, easy to use and reconfigure, and flame-, weather-, and chemical-resistant. Such innovations are anticipated to drive the market over the forecast period.
Rising need for high-performing materials due to consumer demand for efficient and fast data transmission is also expected to fuel demand for fiber optics in the coming years. Thus, increasing demand from telecommunication industry has driven the optical fiber market over the past decade. Growing application scope in healthcare for biomedical applications such as endoscope instruments, arthroscopy and others has resulted in increased product demand. Extensive product usage in the manufacturing sector and rapidly expanding IT and telecommunication sector across the country is also contributing toward the market growth.
Increasing government initiatives for the deployment of broadband has been one of the major growth-driving factors for the U.S. fiber optics market. For instance, in 2012, the U.S. government signed an order to enable the deployment of broadband in buildings, on highways, rights of way, federal lands, and tribal lands. This was aimed at expanding broadband services to untapped areas. Broadband plays a significant role in development of nation’s economy and creates safer and secure environment, while also enhancing the transportation system. As a result, demand for fiber optics for integration in cable wires is witnessing a surge.
However, this mass deployment faces challenges such as lack of proper supporting infrastructure and market for these services. Furthermore, cities like San Francisco have initiated a city-wide fiber optic network, which is also expected to drive the market in future.
Segmentation by type
• Single-mode cable
• Multi-mode cable
The single-mode segment led the market and is expected to maintain its growth over the forecast period. This is attributed to widespread application in different sectors, including telecom, military, and emerging technologies such as data centers. The single-mode variant offers lower risk of power loss as compared to multi-mode optic fibers and is used for long-distance installations, ranging from 2 meters to 10,000 meters.
Segmentation by end use
• Cable Installers
• Wholesalers & Distributors
• Industrial users
Cable installers generally install optic cables and are accountable for repairing and maintaining residential cable television and internet television. The distribution system varies from company to company depending on the material used. For instance, industrial fiber optic has two different product lines. The educational product line is sold through distributors to specific regions, whereas the engineering product line is sold directly to consumers such as Eska, and POF LEDs.
Major companies in the market include Corning Inc.; ADVA Optical Networking SE; Alcatel-Lucent SA; Ciena Corp.; and Cisco Systems, Inc.; Fujitsu; and Huawei. Corning Inc. is the leading player and inventor of fiber optics. Ciena is growing continuously owing to its packet-optical transport systems. Cisco has earned its market position owing to its high revenue, brand loyalty, and integration of optical and IP layers. The optical fiber market is further structured into service providers and internet content providers. Manufacturers are focusing on introducing customized products and services.
Research Support Specialist, USA