Market Insight

Huawei and Nokia named leaders in IHS Markit IMS vendor scorecard for the third time

August 13, 2018

Diane Myers Diane Myers Senior Research Director, VoIP, UC, and IMS

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The IHS Markit “IMS Equipment Vendor Scorecard – 2018” evaluates the top IMS equipment vendors – Ericsson, Huawei, Mavenir, Nokia and ZTE – on criteria using concrete data and metrics, including direct feedback from buyers, vendor market share, market share momentum, financials, solution breadth, reputation for innovation and other benchmarks. The report analyzes the relative strengths of the market leaders, classifying vendors as “leader,” “established” or “challenger” depending on their overall score.


  • Huawei and Nokia are named leaders of the IMS scorecard for the third time. The vendors rise above the rest due to financials and, specifically, Huawei’s customer perception scores and Nokia’s market share gains and percentage of network functions virtualization (NFV) sales.
  • Ericsson is classified as an established player because of solid market share, positive product reliability perceptions and deep operator relationships.
  • Mavenir and ZTE are designated challengers thanks to a strong performance in the market momentum vector.


Leaders perform strongly across all evaluation criteria and vectors in the scorecard. They have established a significant presence in the market and have positive momentum, which means they are likely to cement and expand their leadership positions in the future.


Over the years, Huawei built itself into a credible IMS vendor and a market share leader through a presence in China and in every region except North America. Its customers give the vendor top scores for service and support and strong ratings for product reliability and innovation. Huawei maintains a strong presence in the IMS market as a result of its strong financials, market share and customer perceptions.


Nokia is the third-largest vendor in the IMS market, with a solid installed base of tier 1 operators worldwide. The sheer size of Nokia’s IMS business puts it into the leadership category, and the company benefits from large voice over LTE (VoLTE) wins that continue to expand. Nokia has solid momentum with market share gains and a focus on next-generation IMS solutions that encompass NFV.


Established players perform strongly in the market presence vector. Although established players have lower market momentum than leaders, their significant presence indicates strong adoption of their solutions.


Ericsson is a top IMS vendor with solid market share and strong perceptions among service providers worldwide, especially in product reliability. This, combined with deep relationships with operators, has helped the company capitalize on VoLTE and voice over Wi-Fi (VoWiFi) network opportunities. Ericsson has fallen off in market share momentum and did not receive the highest customer perception rating in product innovation, which pushed its overall momentum score down.


Challengers perform strongly in the market momentum vector. Although challengers have lower market presence than leaders, their positive momentum indicates they are in a good position to grow their market presence in the future.


Mavenir is the smallest of the vendors in the IMS scorecard in terms of IMS equipment revenue and has been through a whirlwind of ownership over the past three years. Throughout it all, the company managed to maintain its focus on IMS and, specifically, VoLTE and VoWiFi. Mavenir received the highest score for perceived leadership in technology innovation and had strong market share growth in 2017.


ZTE is an established vendor in its home country of China and has done well penetrating Eastern Europe, Africa, and South America, which has contributed to its strong market share momentum. The company remains hindered by low customer perception of product reliability, service and support, and technology innovation. ZTE has won business for VoLTE, particularly in China, which should benefit the company through market momentum as the company rights itself now that the US trade sanctions have been lifted.

Research by Market
Enterprise & IT Mobile & Telecom
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