Colombia - Mobile Infrastructure, Broadband, Operators - Statistics and Analyses


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Colombia - Mobile Infrastructure, Broadband, Operators - Statistics and Analyses

Colombia's mobile penetration is relatively high for the region. While market growth has slowed in recent years, it retains significant potential, particularly in the mobile broadband sector where penetration is still low. There is considerable potential for customer take-up of mobile broadband services in rural areas where fixed-line infrastructure remains poor. Since 2010 there have been substantial changes to the Colombian mobile market, particularly with the launch of several MVNOs and the arrival of LTE services.

Colombia has five Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and a number of Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs). UNE was both an MNO and an MVNO, and has now been merged with Tigo.

Three MNOs dominate the mobile market: Claro (the trading name of Comcel), Movistar, and Tigo (the trading name of Colombia Móvil and owned by Millicent). The leader is Claro, but its market share has been falling since 2009. The local trunking service provider Avantel serves a small number of mostly corporate customers using digital iDEN technology.

The MVNOs Uff! Móvil, ETB and Móvil Éxito offer mobile voice and internet services over Tigo's network, while Metrotel and Virgin Mobile have entered into wholesale agreements with Movistar. Since Tigo merged with UNE-EPM it has been able to offer converged services across fixed and mobile networks.

A spectrum auction in June 2013 saw five winning bidders, including the established players Claro, Movistar, Tigo/ETB, Avantel, as well as a new market entrant in the form of the broadcaster DirecTV.

This report provides insights into Colombia's mobile market, including key market statistics and analyses as well as profiles of the major mobile operators. It also contains scenario forecasts for the years 2015 and 2020.

Key developments:

Tigo Colombia signs up with Internet.org; regulator sets in train a multi-spectrum auction; operators launch VoLTE services; Tigo Colombia launches an M2M service; Claro extends LTE coverage; UNE-EPM merged with Tigo Columbia; DirectTV launches LTE; Movistar and Claro extend licenses for ten years; Colombian bank Banagrícola acquires a 70% stake in Uff! Móvil; Avantel plans $250 million investment in LTE; ETB plans building its own mobile network; report update includes the regulator's market data to Q1 2015, operator data to Q3 2015, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Claro/Comcel, Movistar, Tigo, Avantel, DirecTV, UNE-EPM, Uff! Móvil, ETB, Metrotel, Emcali, Virgin Mobile, Móvil Éxito, Globalstar.


1. Synopsis
2. Market analysis
3. Mobile statistics
3.1 General statistics
3.2 Mobile data
3.2.1 SMS, MMS
3.3 Mobile broadband
3.4 Forecasts mobile subscribers 2015; 2017; 2020
3.4.1 Notes on scenario forecasts
4. Regulatory issues
4.1 Spectrum regulations and auctions
4.1.1 Third generation (3G)
4.1.2 1710MHz, 1.8GNz, 2.5GHz
4.1.3 Proposed auctions - 2016
4.2 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
4.3 Theft prevention
5. Mobile infrastructure
5.1 Digital networks
5.1.1 GSM
5.1.2 3G/UMTS
5.1.3 Long-term Evolution (LTE)
5.2 Other infrastructure developments
5.2.1 Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE)
5.2.2 Satellite mobile
6. Major mobile operators
6.1 Claro (Comcel/América Móvil)
6.2 Movistar (Telefónica/Colombia Telecomunicaciones)
6.3 Tigo (Colombia Móvil/Millicom, EPM, ETB)
6.4 Avantel
6.5 UNE-EPM
7. Mobile Virtual Network Operators
7.1 Market analysis
7.2 Uff! Móvil
7.3 ETB
7.4 Metrotel
7.5 Emcali
7.6 Virgin Mobile
7.7 Móvil Éxito
8. Mobile content and applications
8.1 Machine-to-Machine (M2M)
8.2 Mobile TV
9. Related reports
Table 1 Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 1997 - 2004
Table 2 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 2005 - 2016
Table 3 Market share of mobile operators 2001 - 2015
Table 4 Mobile prepaid/postpaid ratio 2005 - 2015
Table 5 SMS messages sent 2013 - 2015
Table 6 MMS messages sent 2013 - 2015
Table 7 Mobile internet subscribers by technology (2G, 3G, 4G) 2011 - 2015
Table 8 Mobile internet subscribers by operator 2013 - 2015
Table 9 Mobile internet users by technology (2G, 3G, 4G) 2014 - 2015
Table 10 Mobile broadband market share by operator 2010 - 2015
Table 11 Mobile broadband penetration 2012 - 2015
Table 12 Forecast mobile subscribers higher growth scenario 2015; 2017; 2020
Table 13 Spectrum allocations 1993
Table 14 3G subscribers 2010 - 2015
Table 15 LTE subscribers 2012 - 2015
Table 16 Claro Colombia subscribers 2001 - 2015
Table 17 Claro Colombia mobile service revenue 2013 - 2015
Table 18 Movistar subscribers 2001 - 2015
Table 19 Movistar Colombia financial data 2013 - 2015
Table 20 Tigo Colombia subscribers 2003 2015
Table 21 Tigo Colombia financial data 2010 - 2013
Table 22 Avantel mobile subscribers 2013 2015
Table 23 UNE-EPM mobile subscribers 2012 2014
Table 24 Uff! mobile subscribers 2011 2015
Table 25 ETB mobile subscribers 2013 2015
Table 26 Virgin Mobile subscribers 2013 2015
Table 27 Móvil Exito subscribers 2013 2015
Chart 1 Mobile subscribers market evolution at a glance 2005 2016
Exhibit 1 4G auction results
Exhibit 2 Comcel (trading as Claro) at a glance
Exhibit 3 Movistar at a glance
Exhibit 4 Tigo at a glance

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