Market Research Logo

2008 Latin America - Telecoms, Mobile & Broadband in Southern Cone

The Southern Cone countries are Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay, the most prosperous countries in Latin America. This annual report offers a wealth of information on the trends and developments in fixed-line telephony, mobile telephony, Internet, broadband, digital TV, and converging media including VoIP and IPTV developments. Subjects include:

  • Key satistics and forecasts;
  • Market and industry overviews;
  • Government policies and regulatory issues;
  • Historical information;
  • Major players (fixed-line, mobile, broadband, and pay TV);
  • Telecom infrastructure (national and international, fixed and wireless);
  • Mobile voice and data markets;
  • Internet market and VoIP;
  • Broadband (DSL, cable, wireless);
  • Convergence, pay TV, and developments in digital TV.


BuddeComm’s Annual Publication on the Southern Cone countries, 2008 Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband in Latin America - the Southern Cone Countries, profiles the three southernmost nations in Latin America.

Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay are Latin America’s most prosperous countries, and this is reflected in the development of telecommunications. These nations are the regional leaders in a number of key indicators, such as standard of living, quality of life, adult literacy, teledensity, and Internet uptake. Argentina and Uruguay have the highest mobile penetration in Latin America, bar a few Caribbean islands, and Chile is the region’s Internet and broadband leader. All three markets present good investment opportunities, particularly in the more advanced technologies such as 3G, convergence, IP-based communications, WiMAX, and digital TV.

This report presents a concise overview of sector liberalisation and privatisation in the Southern Cone sub-region, government initiatives, and regulations in the telecom industry, the development of product offerings for fixed-line, mobile, broadband, and pay-TV technologies, essential country and operator statistics in all telecom sectors, and the emergence of convergence and triple play.

Key highlights

  • While Chile and Argentina have fully privatised and liberalised their telecoms markets, Uruguay’s local fixed-line sector remains a state-owned monopoly. Nevertheless, Uruguay enjoys the highest fixed-line teledensity in Latin America, and its other telecom markets are fully open to competition.
  • The fixed-line sector in the Southern Cone suffers from fixed-mobile substitution. Argentina, with 23% teledensity, is the only country where fixed lines in service are growing, but only by 3% annually.
  • Mobile telephony, on the other hand, has been soaring in the Southern Cone, especially in Uruguay, which had a late development in the mobile market. Competition between operators is keen in all three countries, and penetration has either reached or is close to reaching the 100% mark.
  • The broadband market has been booming, particularly in Chile, where penetration is the highest in Latin America. Argentina’s penetration is the second highest, and Uruguay is not far behind. Although all three markets are open to competition, lack of local loop unbundling has given the incumbent operators a dominant position, particularly in Uruguay, where there is no cable modem broadband.
  • All three countries have developed WiMAX networks. Telmex Chile launched Latin America’s first mobile WiMAX e service in October 2007. And all three countries have witnessed the launch of 3G mobile services - Chile in December 2006, Argentina in May 2007, and Uruguay in July 2007.
  • Convergence has had a different development in each one of the three countries. Chile is the regional leader, with VTR - Latin America’s first triple player - and several other companies all offering triple play packages. In Argentina, a telecom company must ally with a cable TV operator to offer converged services. And in Uruguay, cable TV companies are not allowed to offer either Internet or voice services, and have not been able to develop any convergence solutions.
  • Telefónica Chile was the first company in Latin America to launch IPTV, in June 2007. Uruguay’s Antel hopes to launch IPTV services, but in Argentina, regulations prevent telcos from providing pay TV services.
Mobile penetration and annual change in Southern Cone countries - September 2007
Country Penetration Annual change
Argentina 98.7% +25%
Chile 80.4% +13%
Uruguay 88.3% +62%
(Source: BuddeComm)

For those needing high-level strategic information and objective analysis on this region, this report is essential reading and gives further information on:
  • Regulatory developments and spectrum auctions;
  • Fixed-line developments, including the adoption of alternative technologies such as VoIP;
  • Mobile telephony growth, launch of 3G, and the up-take of mobile data services;
  • Broadband growth and the incursion into wireless technologies such as WiMAX;
  • Convergence, triple play, High Definition TV, IPTV, and other new technologies;
  • Scenario forecasts for the fixed line, mobile, and broadband markets and of Argentina and Chile.

1. Argentina
1.1 Key statistics
1.2 Telecommunications market
1.2.1 Overview of Argentina’s telecom market
1.3 Regulatory environment
1.3.1 Background
1.3.2 Regulatory authorities
1.3.3 Privatisation of Entel
1.3.4 Telecom sector liberalisation in Argentina
1.3.5 Universal Service Fund
1.3.6 Multicarrier system
1.3.7 Rate freezes
1.4 Telecom network operators in Argentina
1.4.1 Overview of operators
1.4.2 Telefónica de Argentina (TASA)
1.4.3 Telecom Argentina
1.4.4 Telmex Argentina
1.4.5 Comsat Argentina
1.4.6 IPLAN
1.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
1.5.1 National telecom networks
1.5.2 International infrastructure
1.5.3 Infrastructure developments
1.6 Internet market
1.6.1 Overview
1.7 Broadband market
1.7.1 Overview
1.7.2 Cable modems
1.7.3 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
1.7.4 Wireless broadband
1.7.5 Broadband Powerline (BPL)
1.8 Content and e-services
1.8.1 E-commerce
1.8.2 Online banking
1.9 Convergence
1.9.1 Overview of media convergence
1.9.2 Triple play models
1.9.3 Regulatory issues
1.9.4 Digital TV
1.10 Mobile communications
1.10.1 Overview of Argentina’s mobile market
1.10.2 Regulatory issues
1.10.3 Mobile technologies
1.10.4 Major mobile operators
1.10.5 Mobile voice services
1.10.6 Mobile data services
1.10.7 Mobile content and applications
1.11 Forecasts
1.11.1 Forecasts - fixed-line market to 2017
1.11.2 Forecasts - Internet services to 2017
1.11.3 Forecasts - mobile market to 2017
2. Chile
2.1 Key statistics
2.2 Telecommunications market
2.2.1 Overview of Chile’s telecom market
2.3 Regulatory environment
2.3.1 Regulatory authorities
2.3.2 Privatisation
2.3.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Chile
2.3.4 Tariffs
2.3.5 Number portability
2.3.6 Access
2.3.7 Interconnect
2.3.8 New regulatory developments
2.4 Telecom network operators in Chile
2.4.1 Overview of operators
2.4.2 Telefónica Chile
2.4.3 Entel Chile
2.4.4 VTR Globalcom
2.4.5 Telefónica del Sur (Telsur)
2.4.6 Telmex Chile
2.4.7 GTD Manquehue
2.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
2.5.1 National telecom networks
2.5.2 International infrastructure
2.5.3 Infrastructure developments
2.6 Internet market
2.6.1 Overview
2.7 Broadband market
2.7.1 Overview
2.7.2 Broadband operators
2.7.3 Cable modems
2.7.4 Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
2.7.5 Broadband Powerline (BPL)
2.7.6 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH) networks
2.7.7 Wireless broadband
2.8 Content and e-services
2.8.1 E-commerce
2.8.2 E-banking
2.8.3 E-government
2.9 Convergence
2.9.1 Overview of media convergence
2.9.2 Triple play models
2.9.3 Digital TV
2.10 Mobile communications
2.10.1 Overview of Chile’s mobile market
2.10.2 Regulatory issues
2.10.3 Mobile technologies
2.10.4 Mobile operators
2.10.5 Mobile voice services
2.10.6 Mobile data services
2.10.7 Mobile content and applications
2.11 Forecasts
2.11.1 Forecasts - fixed-line market to 2017
2.11.2 Forecasts - Internet services to 2017
2.11.3 Forecasts - mobile market to 2017
3. Uruguay
3.1 Key statistics
3.2 Telecommunications market
3.2.1 Overview of Uruguay’s telecom market
3.3 Regulatory environment
3.3.1 Regulatory authority
3.3.2 Telecom sector liberalisation in Uruguay
3.3.3 Privatisation of Antel
3.4 Telecom network operators in Uruguay
3.4.1 Overview of operators
3.4.2 Antel
3.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
3.5.1 National telecom networks
3.5.2 International infrastructure
3.6 Internet market
3.6.1 Overview
3.7 Broadband market
3.7.1 Overview
3.7.2 Wireless broadband
3.8 Content and e-services
3.9 Convergence
3.9.1 Overview of media convergence
3.9.2 Digital TV
3.10 Mobile communications
3.10.1 Overview of Uruguay’s mobile market
3.10.2 Mobile technologies and mobile data services
3.10.3 Major mobile operators
3.10.4 Mobile voice services
4. Glossary of Abbreviations


List of Tables And Exhibites


Table 1 - Country statistics Argentina - 2008
Table 2 - Telephone network statistics - October 2007
Table 3 - Internet user statistics - September 2007
Table 4 - Broadband statistics - September 2007
Table 5 - Mobile statistics - October 2007
Table 6 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 7 - TASA fixed lines in service and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 8 - Telecom Argentina fixed lines in service and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 9 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1996 - 2007
Table 10 - Public phones and annual change - 1996 - 2007
Table 11 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1999 - 2007
Table 12 - Residential dial-up subscribers, free ISP customers and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 13 - Paid dial-up, free dial-up and broadband share - 2001 - 2007
Table 14 - Residential broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2001 - 2007
Table 15 - Corporate broadband subscribers and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 16 - Broadband market share by technology - 2005 - 2007
Table 17 - Broadband market share by operator - September 2007
Table 18 - Speedy ADSL subscribers and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 19 - Arnet ADSL subscribers and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 20 - Cable modem subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2001 - 2007
Table 21 - ADSL subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2001 - 2007
Table 22 - Cable TV subscribers and penetration, based on INDEC data - 1997 - 2006
Table 23 - Pay TV subscribers and operators’ market share according to SAT - 2006
Table 24 - Grupo Clarín cable TV subscribers by area of operation - September 2007
Table 25 - Mobile operators, subscribers and annual change - September 2007
Table 26 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1997 - 2007
Table 27 - Mobile operators’ market share - 1999 - 2007
Table 28 - Evolution of ARPU by operator and annual change - 2005 - 2007
Table 29 - Movistar mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 30 - CTI Móvil mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 31 - Telecom Personal mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 32 - Nextel Argentina mobile subscribers and annual change - 2002 - 2007
Table 33 - Prepaid/postpaid ratio - 1999 - 2007
Table 34 - Forecast fixed-line subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 35 - Forecast fixed-line subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 36 - Forecast broadband subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 37 - Forecast broadband subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 38 - Forecast mobile subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 39 - Forecast mobile subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 40 - Country statistics Chile - 2008
Table 41 - Telephone network statistics - September 2007
Table 42 - Internet user statistics - June 2007
Table 43 - Broadband statistics - June 2007
Table 44 - Mobile statistics - September 2007
Table 45 - National telecommunications authority
Table 46 - Major local telephony operators’ market share - 2003 - 2007
Table 47 - Entel and Telefónica Chile - market share of ILD and DLD traffic - 2001 - 2007
Table 48 - Telefónica Chile lines in service and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 49 - Entel lines in service and annual change - 2001 - 2007
Table 50 - VTR telephony subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 51 - Telsur lines in service and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 52 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 2000 - 2007
Table 53 - Public phones and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 54 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 2000 - 2007
Table 55 - Dial-up subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 56 - Dial-up and broadband subscriber ratio - 2000 - 2007
Table 57 - ISP market share - June 2007
Table 58 - Broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2000 - 2007
Table 59 - Broadband subscriber ratios by technology - 2001 - 2007
Table 60 - Broadband market share - major companies - 2001 - 2007
Table 61 - Cable modem subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2001 - 2007
Table 62 - VTR cable modem subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 63 - ADSL subscribers, annual change and penetration - 2001 - 2007
Table 64 - Telefónica Chile ADSL subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 65 - Entel ADSL+WLL subscribers and annual change - 2002 - 2007
Table 66 - Telsur ADSL subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 67 - Pay TV subscribers by operator and market share - September 2007
Table 68 - Cable TV subscribers and annual change - 1995 - 2007
Table 69 - VTR cable TV subscribers by technology and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 70 - Mobile operators, subscribers and annual change - September 2007
Table 71 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1996 - 2007
Table 72 - Operator market share - 1999 - 2007
Table 73 - Movistar mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 74 - Entel PCS mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 75 - Claro - mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 76 - Prepaid/postpaid ratio - 1999 - 2007
Table 77 - Forecast fixed line subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 78 - Forecast fixed line subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 79 - Forecast broadband subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 80 - Forecast broadband subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 81 - Forecast mobile subscribers - weaker market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 82 - Forecast mobile subscribers - stronger market growth scenario - 2007; 2012; 2017
Table 83 - Country statistics Uruguay - 2008
Table 84 - Telephone network statistics - June 2007
Table 85 - Internet user statistics - 2005
Table 86 - Broadband statistics - June 2007
Table 87 - Mobile statistics - September 2007
Table 88 - National telecommunications authority
Table 89 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1997 - 2007
Table 90 - Public payphones and annual change - 1997 - 2007
Table 91 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1999 - 2007
Table 92 - Broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration rates - 2005 - 2007
Table 93 - Anteldata ADSL subscribers and annual change - 2003 - 2006
Table 94 - Pay TV subscribers, annual change and penetration rates - 2001 - 2007
Table 95 - Mobile operators, subscribers and annual change - September 2007
Table 96 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1997 - 2007
Table 97 - Mobile operators’ market share - 2003 - 2007
Table 98 - Ancel mobile subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2007
Table 99 - Movistar mobile subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2007
Table 100 - CTI Móvil mobile subscribers and annual change - 2004 - 2007
Exhibit 1 - The recession of 2000 - 2002
Exhibit 2 - Global Crossing’s acquisition of Impsat Fiber Networks
Exhibit 3 - TASA at a glance
Exhibit 4 - Telecom Argentina at a glance
Exhibit 5 - Telmex Argentina company history
Exhibit 6 - Major submarine cable networks landing in Argentina
Exhibit 7 - The CABASE NAP dispute
Exhibit 8 - CableVisión historical overview
Exhibit 9 - Multicanal historical overview
Exhibit 10 - PCS auctions - 1999
Exhibit 11 - Movicom BellSouth history
Exhibit 12 - Telefónica Comunicaciones Personales, trading as Unifón history
Exhibit 13 - Regions and primary zones
Exhibit 14 - Local telephony operators - number of zones of operation - June 2007
Exhibit 15 - Telefónica Chile at a glance
Exhibit 16 - Telefónica Chile company history
Exhibit 17 - Entel Chile at a glance
Exhibit 18 - Entel company history
Exhibit 19 - VTR Globalcom at a glance
Exhibit 20 - VTR company history
Exhibit 21 - Telsur at a glance
Exhibit 22 - Telsur company history
Exhibit 23 - Telmex Chile company history
Exhibit 24 - Major submarine cable networks landing in Chile
Exhibit 25 - Metrópolis history
Exhibit 26 - Mobile concessions and original shareholders - 1989
Exhibit 27 - Telefónica Móvil de Chile (TEM Chile) history
Exhibit 28 - BellSouth Chile history
Exhibit 29 - Claro/Smartcom/Chilesat history
Exhibit 30 - Licensed ILD operators in Uruguay - January 2008
Exhibit 31 - Antel at a glance
Exhibit 32 - Major submarine cable network landing in Uruguay

Download our eBook: How to Succeed Using Market Research

Learn how to effectively navigate the market research process to help guide your organization on the journey to success.

Download eBook

Share this report