Wireless transport systems seen as major new market

2nd Oct 2001

The market for information technology and wireless solutions in the public transport and Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) sector is set to create a major new market worth $8 billion in the US and $5 billion in Europe, for technology vendors within five years.

A new study from UK-based ARC Group entitled “Wireless ITS: Signalling, Traffic Control and Information Systems” predicts that new channels such as intelligent transport and public transportation information, signalling and control systems will open up new and lucrative opportunities for cellular players.

“The market for the European standardised GSM-R is perhaps the best indication of the growing size of the demand for cellular solutions in the transportation sector,” said Simon Maslin, lead author of the report. “GSM-R is being rolled out on the national rail networks of all EU nations, creating a market which requires increasing quantities of cellular systems sufficient to provide GSM coverage over thousands of miles of European railways. As a result, demand for this segment of the transport market alone will create a massive market for cellular solutions.”

The benefits of ITS systems go beyond direct commercial gain, however. Indirectly, they represent huge potential savings on the public purse as well as in insurance payouts, according to ARC. Government spending on public safety (police, fire, ambulance services), medical care and social benefits resulting from accidents could be substantially reduced, more than covering the cost of such systems. Lower insurance payouts would encourage insurance companies to promote ITS and ultimately feed through to lower premiums and lower transport costs in general.

By assisting the collection and dissemination of information, wireless technologies can help to provide remote control, signalling and information capabilities, for fleet management and safety applications. Wireless cellular systems in particular, with their widely available coverage, hardware and expertise offer a convenient and reliable alternative to proprietary radio systems and other methods of communication. Cellular systems provide standardised solutions for many communications requirements in the signalling and control areas of ITS and transport systems and are being implemented in these areas by a variety of major players such as Siemens.


The “Wireless ITS” report provides an examination of the potential for wireless and cellular technologies within the market for intelligent transport and public transportation information, signalling and control systems. The report offers market analyses of a rarely looked at branch of telematics and M2M wireless technologies, and also presents the case for wireless cellular systems in this sector.



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