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Belgium - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Belgium - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Belgium government preps conditions for a fourth mobile player in 2019

Belgium’s telecom market is relatively small but has attracted investment from some of the region’s major players, including Liberty Global and Orange Group. There have been significant developments in the competitive landscape in recent years. In mid-2018 the regulator imposed amended conditions on market players aimed at encouraging investment in underserved areas and securing wholesale access to copper and fibre infrastructure.

The mobile market is served by the three network operators Proximus, Orange Belgium and BASE/Telenet and by a number of MVNOs. Mobile networks have been upgraded with LTE technology to support growing mobile data use among subscribers, while Proximus and Telenet have also initiated trials to develop services based on 5G. Commercial 5G services are expected soon after the auction of 3.5GHz spectrum in early 2019.

The mobile market continues to be transformed, particularly with MVNOs shifting between networks. The government is keen to set the framework which could enable a new player to enter the market in 2019. Existing operators are opposed to such a move, citing harsh competitive conditions and pressure on both revenue and investment in the sector. A characteristic of the market is customer preference for quad-play services, and to this end MNOs are strengthening their fixed-line offerings. In this landscape the mobile-only provides will struggle to gain customers in coming years.

In the broadband sector there is effective competition between the DSL and cable platforms, while in recent years government support has also encouraged investment in fibre networks. Telenet, supported by its parent Liberty Global, has invested in developing services based on the new DOCSIS3.1 standard, which is capable of providing data at 1Gb/s and higher. The company expected that all of its nodes would be upgraded to provide a gigabit service by mid-2019. Proximus has also embarked on a €3 billion ‘Fibre for Belgium’ which will see about 85% of businesses and 50% or residential premises served with FttH or FttB/VDSL by 2027.

This report provides data and analysis on key aspects of the Belgian telecom market. It assesses the latest statistics on fixed-network services and reviews key regulatory issues, noting the status of interconnection, local loop unbundling, number portability and carrier preselection. The telecom infrastructure and major fixed-network operators are also profiled. The report also analyses the fixed and wireless broadband markets, providing broadband forecasts and assessing developments in related technologies such as FWA, WLAN and Wi-Fi In addition the report the mobile market, providing statistics on the main players and regulatory measures as well as recent developments on LTE rollouts and investment in 5G.

Key developments:

Government aiming to set up a fourth mobile operator in early 2019;
Lycamobile Belgium switches host network from Orange Belgium to BASE;
Proximus and Orange Belgium progress with 5G trials;
Regulator issues Strategic Plan covering 2017-19, undergoes structural changes to meet strategic vision;
Proximus engaged in €3 billion ‘Fibre for Belgium’ investment program to 2027;
Regulator approves amended wholesale access conditions;
Networks on track to reach national 30Mb/s connectivity by 2020;
Report update includes the regulator’s market data update for 2017, regulator’s 2017 annual report, telcos’ financial and operating data to Q2 2018, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Proximus (Belgacom), Orange Belgium (Mobistar), BASE, Telenet, Lycamobile Belgium, Versatel, Interkabel, COLT, Scarlet, Tele2


  • EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
  • KEY STATISTICS
    • Table Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities - Belgium - 2018 (e)
    • COUNTRY OVERVIEW
  • TELECOMMUNICATIONS MARKET
    • HISTORICAL OVERVIEW
    • MARKET ANALYSIS
      • Table Telecom market investment: fixed and mobile by sector - 2006 - 2010; 2014 - 16
      • Table Total telecom market investment - 2012 - 2017
      • Table Telecom market investment: network and licenses - 2011 - 2017
      • Table Telecom investment as a proportion of revenue - 2011 - 2017
      • Table Telecom market investment by operator (regulator data) - 2007 - 2013
      • Table Retail telecom revenue by sector - 2012 - 2017
      • Table Wholesale telecom revenue by sector - 2012 - 2017
      • Table Total telecom revenue by sector - 2011 - 2017
      • Table Fixed voice ARPU - 2008 - 2015
  • REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT
    • HISTORIC OVERVIEW
    • REGULATORY AUTHORITY
    • GOVERNMENT POLICIES
    • INTERCONNECT
    • ACCESS
      • Table Unbundled loops and access lines (historic) - 2004 - 2009
    • CABLE NETWORK ACCESS
    • NUMBER PORTABILITY (NP)
      • Table Fixed numbers ported - 2000 - 2017
    • CARRIER PRESELECTION (CPS)
      • Table Carrier preselect numbers and annual change - 2000 - 2017
    • WHOLESALE LINE RENTAL (WLR)
  • FIXED NETWORK OPERATORS
    • INTRODUCTION
      • Table Proximus share of fixed-line traffic by type - 2006 - 2012
      • Table Fixed-line telephony revenue - 2002 - 2017
      • Table Average price for fixed-line call - 2007 - 2013
      • Table Fixed-line and mobile traffic volume - 2008 - 2017
      • Table Fixed-line traffic by type - 2005 - 2017
    • PROXIMUS
      • Table Proximus (CBU) access channels - 2007 - 2018
      • Table Proximus Group financial data - 2003 - 2018
      • Table Proximus revenue by sector - 2004 - 2018
      • Table Proximus revenue by operating division - 2007 - 2018
      • Table Proximus fixed-line services revenue by sector (CBU) - 2007 - 2018
      • Table Proximus monthly ARPU by sector (CBU) - 2005 - 2018
    • COLT TELECOM
    • ORANGE BELGIUM
      • Table Orange Belgium financial data - 2013 - 2018
      • Table Orange Belgium service revenue by sector - 2007 - 2016
      • Table Orange Belgium retail service revenue by sector (new style) - 2016 - 2018
      • Table Orange Belgium subscribers by sector - 2008 - 2018
    • SCARLET (FORMERLY KPN BELGIUM)
    • TELE2 BELGIUM
    • TELENET
      • Table Telenet revenue by sector - 2004 - 2018
      • Table Telenet subscribers by sector - 2006 - 2018
      • Table Telenet financial data - 2005 - 2018
      • Table Telenet subscriber monthly ARPU (historic) - 2005 - 2014
  • TELECOMMUNICATIONS INFRASTRUCTURE
    • OVERVIEW OF THE NATIONAL TELECOM NETWORK
      • Table Historical - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 1995; 1997; 1999 - 2009
      • Table Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2010 - 2018
      • Table Fixed lines by type - 2006 - 2017
    • NEXT GENERATION NETWORK (NGN)
    • INTERNATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE
    • CLOUD SERVICES
    • SMART METERS
  • BROADBAND MARKET
    • INTRODUCTION AND STATISTICAL OVERVIEW
      • Market analysis
      • Broadband statistics
        • Table Historical - Internet users and penetration rate - 1995 - 2009
        • Table Internet users and penetration rate - 2010 - 2018
        • Table Historical - Broadband fixed-line subscribers by technology - 2000 - 2009
        • Table Broadband fixed-line subscribers by technology - 2010 - 2018
        • Table Broadband subscription net additions per year - 2005 - 2017
        • Table Residential broadband revenue - 2014 - 2017
        • Table Residential broadband ARPU - 2013 - 2017
        • Table Fixed-line broadband penetration by service - 2007 - 2017
        • Table Proportion of fixed-broadband lines by speed - 2010 - 2017
        • Table Fixed-broadband lines by speed - 2012 - 2017
      • Market share
        • Table Broadband subscribers by operator - 2012 - 2015
        • Table Broadband market share by operator - 2006 - 2015
      • Forecasts - broadband subscribers - 2019; 2021; 2023
        • Table Forecast broadband subscribers - 2019; 2021; 2023
    • HYBRID FIBRE COAX (HFC) NETWORKS
      • Introduction
        • Table Cable modem subscribers - 2000 - 2018
      • Telenet
        • Table Telenet broadband subscribers - 2006 - 2018
      • Interkabel
      • SFR (Numéricable)
    • DIGITAL SUBSCRIBER LINE (DSL) NETWORKS
      • Table DSL subscribers - 2000 - 2018
      • Proximus
        • Table Historical - Proximus fixed broadband subscribers - 2000 - 2009
        • Table Proximus fixed broadband subscribers - 2010 - 2018
      • Versatel/Tele2 Belgium
      • Orange Belgium (Mobistar)
        • Table Orange Belgium broadband subscribers - 2008 - 2018
        • Table Orange Belgium TV subscribers - 2016 - 2018
      • Other DSL developments
        • Table VDSL subscribers - 2012 - 2017
    • FIBRE-TO-THE-PREMISES (FTTP) NETWORKS
      • Introduction
        • Table FttP/B subscribers - 2012 - 2017
      • Government support
      • Digital Metropolis Antwerp
      • Proximus
    • OTHER FIXED BROADBAND SERVICES
      • Broadband Powerline (BPL)
      • Fixed Wireless Access (FWA)
      • WLAN/Wi-Fi
      • WiMAX
    • COMPETITION ISSUES
      • Wholesale
        • Table Proximus wholesale broadband lines - 2010 - 2016
      • Naked DSL
  • MOBILE COMMUNICATIONS
    • MARKET ANALYSIS
      • Table Mobile revenue - 2012 - 2017
    • MOBILE STATISTICS
      • General statistics
        • Table Historical - Active mobile/SIM card subscribers and penetration - 1999 - 2009
        • Table Active mobile/SIM card subscribers and teledensity - 2010 - 2018
        • Table Market share by operator - 2002 - 2017
        • Table Mobile ARPU - 2011 - 2017
        • Table Mobile voice traffic - 2005 - 2017
        • Table Average use of service per subscriber per month - 2010 - 2017
        • Table Mobile prepaid and contract subscribers (residential, MNOs) - 2012 - 2017
    • FORECASTS - MOBILE SUBSCRIBERS - 2019; 2021; 2023
      • Table Forecast - Mobile subscribers - 2019; 2021; 2023
    • MOBILE INFRASTRUCTURE
      • 5G
      • 4G (LTE)
        • Table LTE subscribers with data - 2013 - 2017
      • 3G
        • Table 3G subscribers with data - 2013 - 2017
      • GSM
    • INTERNET OF THINGS (IOT)
      • Machine-to-Machine (M2M)
        • Table M2M connections - 2011 - 2017
        • Table M2M revenue - 2014 - 2017
        • Table Orange Belgium M2M connections - 2009 - 2018
    • MOBILE DATA
      • Table Data traffic on mile networks - 2012 - 2017
      • Table Average data traffic per subscribers per month - 2013 - 2017
      • Table Proximus mobile data traffic - 2015 - 2017
      • Table Proximus average mobile data traffic - 2016 - 2018
      • Short Message Service (SMS)
        • Table Proximus SMS messages (CBU) - 2008 - 2014
        • Table SMS traffic - 2001 - 2017
      • SMS over fixed networks
      • Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
    • MOBILE BROADBAND
      • Table Mobile broadband subscribers by technology - 2008 - 2018
      • Table Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration - 2008 - 2018
    • REGULATORY ISSUES
      • Spectrum
        • Table 800MHz auction results - 2013
        • Table 2.6GHz auction results - 2011
        • Table Spectrum assignment overview
      • Roaming
        • Table Mobile roaming voice traffic - 2015 - 2017
        • Table European roaming charges - 2007 - 2016
        • Table European roaming charges - 2014 - 2017
      • Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
        • Table Mobile termination tariffs - 2006 - 2013; 2015
        • Table Mobile termination voice revenue - 2007 - 2017
      • Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
        • Table Annual mobile numbers ported - 2002 - 2017
    • MAJOR MOBILE OPERATORS
      • Proximus
        • Table Proximus mobile revenue by sector (CBU) - 2007 - 2018
        • Table Proximus mobile subscribers - 2005 - 2018
        • Table Proximus CBU subscribers by type - 2007 - 2018
        • Table Proximus annualised ARPU (CBU) by sector - 2007 - 2018
      • Orange Belgium (Mobistar)
        • Table Orange Belgium subscribers (Belgium) - 2007 - 2018
        • Table Orange Belgium MVNOs subscribers (Belgium) - 2014 - 2018
        • Table Orange Belgium financial data - 2013 - 2018
        • Table Orange Belgium mobile services revenue - 2005 - 2018
        • Table Orange Belgium annualised ARPU - 2005 - 2016
        • Table Orange Belgium annualised ARPO - 2017 - 2018
      • BASE (Telenet)
        • Table BASE mobile revenue - 2007 - 2018
        • Table BASE subscribers (historic) - 2004 - 2015
        • Table Telenet mobile subscribers - 2006 - 2018
        • Table BASE annualised ARPU - 2005 - 2015
      • Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs)
        • Table MVNO revenue - 2012 - 2017
        • Table MVNO subscribers and market share - 2006 - 2017
        • Table MVNO mobile voice traffic and market share - 2006 - 2017
    • MOBILE CONTENT AND APPLICATIONS
      • Location-based services
      • Mobile TV

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