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Bahrain - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Forecasts

Bahrain - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Forecasts

Market dynamics have changed Bahrain telecom's market

The Bahrain telecoms market has become more competitive over the past few years particularly in the mobile and broadband sectors. This, along with technology changes, has led to significant changes in the market dynamics. As a result; in April 2014 the Bahrain Telecommunications Regulatory Authority announced it was undertaking a strategic review of the telecoms market. The review aims to examine the impact of current ex-ante regulations and the regulatory conditions overall in the context of current and future market directions.

The citizens of Bahrain are enthusiastic users of smart phone applications to the detriment of voice revenues for the operators which are in decline. Mobile broadband also accounts for the majority of broadband subscriptions in the kingdom, capturing almost 90% market share. The broadband market today is competitive so much so that in 2014 the TRA decided to deregulate around 90% of broadband services - citing that there was no longer a single dominant broadband provider for mass-market services.

Overall; the Bahrain telecoms market is considered progressive and dynamic and has a high penetration of mobile and broadband services. It offers affordability as a result of the increased competition and LTE deployment is strongly supported by the government with LTE services already available in the kingdom. The TRA allocated further 4G spectrum licenses in late 2013 to Batelco, Zain and Viva.

A National Broadband Network (NBN) is also underway and development took a significant step forward In February 2014 with Batelco signing a memorandum of understanding with the government to build the NBN utilising Batelco's existing fibre network in the joint project.

Key telecom parameters 2011; 2014
Sector | 2011 | 2014
Subscribers to telecoms services (million):
Broadband | 0.56 | 1.8
Fixed-line telephony | 0.24 | 0.25
Mobile phone | 1.69 | 2.45
(Source: BuddeComm)
Note: Broadband subscribers includes both fixed and mobile broadband.

Companies covered in this report include:

Batelco, MenaTelecom, Lightspeed Communications, Kalaam Telecom, 2Connect, Noorsat, Bahrain Broadband (Greenisis), Zain Bahrain, Viva Bahrain.

This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Bahrain's telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, Internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors.

Subjects include:

Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
Facts, figures and statistics;
Industry and regulatory issues;
Infrastructure;
Major players, revenues, subscribers, ARPU
Internet, IPTV;
Mobile voice and data markets;
Broadband (FttH, DSL, wireless);
Convergence and digital media;
Broadband subscriber forecasts to 2023;


1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
2.1 Country overview
3. Telecommunications market
3.1 Overview of Bahrain's telecom market
4. Regulatory environment
4.1 Background
4.2 Regulatory authority
4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Bahrain
4.3.1 First National Telecommunications Plan
4.3.2 Second National Telecommunications Plan and planned measures
4.3.3 Third National Telecommunications Plan
4.3.4 Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) licences
4.4 Interconnect
4.5 Access
4.6 Number portability
4.7 Privatisation
5. Fixed network operators in Bahrain
5.1 Overview
5.2 Bahrain telecommunications company (Batelco)
5.3 Alternative operators
5.3.1 MenaTelecom
5.3.2 Lightspeed Communications
5.3.3 Kalaam Telecom
5.3.4 2Connect
6. Telecommunications infrastructure
6.1 National telecom network
6.2 International infrastructure
6.2.1 Submarine cable networks
6.2.2 Satellite networks
6.2.3 Noorsat
7. Wholesaling
7.1 Overview
7.2 Unbundled services (LLU)
8. Broadband access market
8.1 Overview
8.2 Broadband and Internet statistics
8.3 Broadband subscriber forecasts
8.3.1 Scenario 1 higher growth
8.3.2 Scenario 2 lower growth
8.4 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
8.5 Fibre to the Home (FttH)
8.5.1 National Broadband Network (NBN)
8.6 Wireless broadband
8.6.1 WiMAX
8.6.2 WiFi
8.6.3 iBurst
9. Digital economy / digital media
9.1 Overview
9.2 Social media
9.3 E-government
9.4 E-education
9.5 Utilities
10. Digital broadcasting
10.1 Satellite TV
10.2 Broadband TV (IPTV)
10.3 Web TV
11. Mobile communications
11.1 Overview of Bahrain's mobile market
11.1.1 Mobile statistics
11.2 Regulatory issues
11.2.1 Second mobile licence
11.2.2 Third mobile licence
11.2.3 Prepaid subscriber registration
11.2.4 Roaming tariff reduction
11.3 Mobile technologies
11.3.1 Analogue
11.3.2 Digital
11.3.3 Third Generation (3G)
11.3.4 Long-term evolution (LTE)
11.4 Major mobile operators
11.4.1 Batelco
11.4.2 Zain Bahrain
11.4.3 Viva Bahrain / STC Bahrain
11.5 Mobile voice services
11.5.1 Prepaid
11.5.2 Credit transfer service
11.6 Mobile broadband (access)
11.7 Mobile SMS
12. Related reports
Table 1 Country statistics Bahrain 2014
Table 2 Telephone network statistics 2014
Table 3 Internet user statistics 2013
Table 4 Broadband subscriber statistic 2014
Table 5 Mobile statistics 2014
Table 6 National telecommunications authority
Table 7 GDP growth and inflation 2005 - 2014
Table 8 Telecom sector revenue 2006 - 2012
Table 9 Telecom sector revenue breakdown 2012
Table 10 Batelco revenue and profit Bahrain and other - 2005 Q1 2014
Table 11 Batelco revenue by division - 2005 - 2013
Table 12 Batelco total group mobile subscribers 2005 - 2013
Table 13 Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 1995 2004
Table 14 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2005 2014
Table 15 ARPU for National calls 2006 - 2012
Table 16 Historic - Internet users and penetration estimates - 1995 - 2004
Table 17 Internet users and penetration estimates - 2005 - 2013
Table 18 Broadband subscribers - 2005 - 2014
Table 19 Fixed broadband subscriptions 2010 - 2013
Table 20 Broadband market revenue 2009 2012
Table 21 Broadband subscribers by access method 2012; 2013
Table 22 Broadband subscriptions by access speed 2007 - 2012
Table 23 Forecast broadband subscribers higher market growth scenario 2015; 2019; 2024
Table 24 Forecast broadband subscribers lower market growth scenario 2015; 2019; 2024
Table 25 Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 1995 - 2004
Table 26 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 2005 - 2015
Table 27 Mobile market revenue 2007 - 2013
Table 28 Mobile monthly ARPU 2008 - 2013
Table 29 Accepted mobile number portability requests 2011 - 2014
Table 30 Batelco Bahrain subscribers 2011 - 2014
Table 31 Zain Bahrain revenue, EBITDA, CAPEX and ARPU - 2005 - 2014
Table 32 Zain Bahrain mobile subscribers 2005 - 2014
Table 33 Bahrain total prepaid mobile subscribers - 1999 - 2014
Table 34 Zain Bahrain prepaid subscribers - 2004 - 2014
Table 35 Mobile broadband subscribers 2012 - 2015
Table 36 SMS message sent 2008 - 2013

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