This annual report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Morocco’s telecommunications market. Subjects covered include:
A booming 3G mobile broadband marketMorocco is one of the most advanced telecommunications markets in Africa and often seen as a role model for future developments in other parts of the continent. It features a majority-privatised, highly profitable incumbent telco (Maroc Telecom), three fixed and mobile network operators, as well as the highest penetration and some of the lowest prices on the continent for broadband Internet access.
Morocco’s mobile market, at already more than 80% market penetration and one of the highest in Africa, received a late boost in early 2010 from the launch of GSM services by the country’s third mobile network, Wana, which had already been operating a CDMA2000 network since 2007.
The fixed-line market has experienced a renaissance, following the launch of the second and third network operators (Meditel and Wana) and fuelled by the growing demand for broadband services. Most of the new connections are wireless and increasingly converging with mobile services.
The Internet market was dominated by Maroc Telecom’s ADSL broadband service which held over 90% of the market until recently. However, within three years of their introduction, third-generation (3G) mobile broadband services had taken almost two-thirds of the broadband market by early 2010. This development is expected to continue, since the mobile networks reach a far greater percentage of the population than Maroc Telecom’s copper fixed-line network.
With all three major players being fixed as well as mobile network operators, the boundaries between fixed and mobile are beginning to disappear as technologies and services converge. Innovative new services have been introduced such as the first commercial IPTV service on the continent. To accommodate the increasing amount of voice and Internet traffic, fibre optic national backbone networks and international connectivity are being expanded.
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