France - Mobile Infrastructure, Broadband, Operators - Statistics and Analyses
The French mobile phone market is one of the largest in Europe. The network operators Orange, SFR Group, Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile have invested in network infrastructure and technologies in recent years. LTE-A providing data at above 300Mb/s had extensive coverage by early 2017, while both Orange and Bouygues Telecom are involved in 5G trials. The regulator has also been supportive, having licensed spectrum in the 2.5GHz and 3.5GHz bands since mid-2016. In early 2017 it opened a consultation with a view to releasing spectrum in these bands for mobile broadband use while retaining a portion of the 3.5GHz band for 5G in anticipation of that technology coming into commercial use from about 2018.
Competition among the MNOs and a large number of MVNOs has caused mobile services revenue to fall steadily. This pressure has encouraged operators to look to convergence and bundled services, and so expand their offerings beyond mobile voice and data. Orange and SFR dominate the market, followed by Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile. Free Mobile launched services in 2012, and the company's low pricing continues to have repercussions for the market. From January 2017 it began to scale down its national roaming arrangement with Orange.
This report provides key statistics and analyses on the French mobile voice and data market. It assess recent developments related to spectrum licensing and regulatory issues, and profiles the major players and MVNOs, providing statistics on their operating and financial performance as well as their strategies in an increasingly fierce competitive market.
Orange partners with Ericsson and Nokia to develop a path to 5G; regulator consults on revised guidelines for mobile network sharing; SFR Group's RED Technologies pilots Licensed Shared Access using 2.3GHz spectrum; MNOs make progress on mobile dead zones coverage; regulator proposes mobile broadband use for 2.6GHz and 3.5GHz band spectrum; Bouygues Telecom completes sale of 500 towers on lease-back arrangement; MVNO market share increases to 10.8% of subscribers; Virgin Mobile merges operations with SFR; report update includes the regulator's market data to September 2016, operator data to Q3 2016, recent market developments.