Market Research Logo

2006 North Asian Broadband and Internet Markets


Attention: There is an updated edition available for this report.

This annual report offers a wealth of information on the Broadband and Internet markets in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea, Taiwan. Subjects covered include:

Internet Infrastructure and Developments
Internet policies, models and concepts
Regional and International Networks
Internet Market, VPNs and VoIP
Vision for a National Policy, Government Policies
Network Operators, Wholesalers and Retailers, Utilities Projects
xDSL, HFC, MDS, Satellite, Cable Modems, Cable Telephony
Wireless Broadband


This Asia market report covers 8 economies in the North Asia sub-region. It takes an overall look at the various telecoms markets, together with a particular look at the broadband Internet and mobile segments in each of the economies. The markets covered include:

China By early 2006, the number of Internet subscribers in China had passed 110 million (8.5% penetration). This represented about 11% of the world’s total Internet subscriber base. The Chinese government remained well aware of the enormous social and economic value of Internet and its importance in creating a prosperous nation. At the same time, however, it is concerned by the perceived risk to cultural heritage and to political stability. In the meantime, China has also become the world’s biggest user of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services.

China has been steadily emerging as a broadband superpower, showing further strong growth coming into 2006. Though penetration remains comparatively low, by March 2006, broadband was growing in China at an annual rate of almost 50%. With 41.2 million broadband subscribers, China had the second most broadband services in the world after the US (48.3 million); and there is still much room for growth. China’s broadband market is on track to become the world’s largest.

Hong Kong Digitalised since 1995, the territory has been wired with 400,000km of optical fibre. This extensive broadband network covers the vast majority of households and provides the basis for a wide range of existing and future telecommunications services. As a result of its extensive infrastructure roll-out, Hong Kong moved quickly to provide more than 90% of households with broadband access. Broadband subscribers in Hong Kong had jumped to almost 1.7 million by April 2006, having increased by one million in quick time. OTA report at the same time that broadband household penetration was running at 66.5%. Just over 61% of the total Internet subscriber base had a broadband connection.

Japan By end-2006, Japan had more than 24 million broadband Internet services in place. Much of the success of broadband in Japan is owed to the stunning growth in Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) broadband services. Softbank, via its Yahoo! BB service, has been the driving force behind the booming DSL market. Japan claims the third largest number of Internet users after the US and China, if the mobile Internet user base is included in the tally. Whilst enthusiasm for DSL appears to be waning, Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH) Internet access has been making impressive progress in the Japanese market with 5.4 million FttH subscribers signed up by early 2006. As Japan runs hot in the IP telephony market, it has been predicted that the country will have 28 million Internet phone lines operating by end-2007. There were around nine million VoIP subscribers in the country by end-2005.

Macau has also been quick to adopt Internet in its various forms with strong encouragement from the administration. Broadband Internet access, using DSL technology, has been developing quickly and by April 2006 over 80% of all Internet subscriptions in Macau were broadband based. Broadband household penetration was running at a healthy 49%.

Mongolia The Internet market has been languishing. The Internet user base is estimated at 240,000 (or a penetration of just over 8%), with an estimated 70,000 Internet subscribers at end-2005. Broadband is virtually non-existent.

North Korea North Korea is the only country in the world yet to adopt Internet for public usage. A lack of infrastructure coupled with the regime’s anxiety about the free flow of information, means that only a select group of government, educational and research institute officials are authorised to access the Web in the country. Nor are personal computers widely available to the general public. With what little access there is to the Internet, the government maintains strict controls and censorship.

North Korea’s obsession with secrecy has made it extremely difficult to get a clear picture of the country’s telecom sector. [In the absence of official statistics, we have made estimates in our report.] The country looks like remaining isolated form the rest of the world for some years to come.

South Korea has the highest number of broadband connections per capita in the world. By early 2006, more than 25% of the population, or 75% of households, were broadband subscribers as the broadband market in country was reaching near saturation. The country’s impressive broadband progress began in the late 1990s when the government issued a policy mandating that operators provide a 2Mb/s connection for every citizen. This broadband policy, combined with a competitive market and a densely populated and computer literate society, laid the foundations for Korea’s burgeoning broadband market. It seems that South Korea is looking for something new in the market and the introduction of WiBro broadband access, with services expected to become commercially available in 2006, is looking like the answer.

Taiwan The broadband market in Taiwan is also one of the more heavily penetrated in the world. With around 90% of households having some form of Internet access, by early 2006 about 55% of these households had access to the Internet provided by some form of broadband. DSL provides the dominant platform for the broadband access. The country’s broadband subscriber base was growing strongly at an annual rate of about 20% coming into 2006. The Taiwanese government has been actively promoting broadband and has committed the country to being on a par with the US by 2010.

1. OVERVIEW OF THE BROADBAND AND INTERNET MARKETS
1.1 Internet market
1.2 Market overview
1.2.2 Cultural and regulatory issues
1.2.3 Internet advertising
1.2.4 Asian Domain Name Dispute-Resolution Centre
1.2.5 Internet access and infrastructure
1.2.6 ISP market
1.2.7 ASP market
1.2.8 Intranets and extranets
1.3 Broadband market
1.3.1 Market overview
1.3.2 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
1.3.3 Cable Modem
1.3.4 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH)
1.3.5 Wireless broadband
1.3.6 Satellite Internet
1.3.7 Broadband over Powerline (BPL) services / Powerline Communications (PLC)
1.3.8 Major broadband markets in Asia
2. CHINA
2.1 Internet market
2.1.1 Overview
2.1.2 Internet statistics
2.1.3 Analysis - slowdown of Internet growth in China
2.2 Broadband market
2.2.1 Overview
2.2.2 Broadband service providers
2.2.3 Broadband networks
2.3 E-services
2.3.1 Overview
2.3.2 E-commerce
2.3.3 Regulatory issues
2.3.4 Internet regulations and censorship
2.3.5 Google.cn
2.3.6 E-payment systems
2.3.7 E-government
2.3.8 E-entertainment
2.3.9 Search engines
3. HONG KONG
3.1 Internet market
3.1.1 Market overview
3.1.2 ISP market
3.1.3 Major ISPs
3.2 Broadband market
3.2.1 Overview
3.2.2 Licensing
3.2.3 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
3.2.4 Cable modem
3.2.5 Wireless broadband
3.2.6 Broadband via satellite
3.2.7 E-Services
4. JAPAN
4.1 Internet and Broadband statistics
4.2 Broadband market
4.2.1 Overview
4.2.2 Mega Consortium / Broadband Consortium Japan (BB Japan)
4.2.3 Impact of broadband on voice market
4.3 Cable modems
4.3.1 Market overview
4.3.2 Regulatory issues
4.4 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
4.4.1 Market overview
4.4.2 Major ADSL providers
4.5 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH)
4.5.1 Market overview
4.5.2 Major FttH players
4.6 Broadband over powerline (BPL) / powerline communications (PLC)
4.7 Wireless broadband
4.7.1 Wireless LAN (WLAN)
4.7.2 Major WLAN providers
4.7.3 Voice over WLAN (VoWLAN)
4.7.4 Ultra Wideband (UWB)
4.7.5 Local Multipoint Distribution Service (LMDS)
4.7.6 Broadband Internet via satellite
4.8 Global LAN Ethernet
5. MACAU
5.1 Internet market
5.1.1 Market overview
5.2 Broadband market
5.2.1 Broadband statistics
5.2.2 ADSL
6. MONGOLIA
6.1 Internet market
6.1.1 Overview
6.1.2 Mongolia Internet Exchange (MIX)
6.1.3 ISP market
6.2 Broadband market
6.2.1 Fibre-to-the-building (FttB) project
6.2.2 ADSL
7. NORTH KOREA
7.1 Internet market
7.1.1 Overview
7.1.2 Websites
7.1.3 Email service
7.1.4 VoIP
7.1.5 Internet cafes
8. SOUTH KOREA
8.1 Broadband market
8.1.1 Overview
8.1.2 Growth drivers
8.1.3 Statistical overview
8.1.4 Major broadband ISPs
8.1.5 Broadband services
8.2 E-services
8.2.1 Overview
8.2.2 E-commerce
8.2.3 Online trading
8.2.4 E-banking
8.2.5 E-government
8.2.6 E-entertainment
9. TAIWAN
9.1 Internet market
9.1.1 Market overview
9.1.2 Public Internet access
9.1.3 Direct Internet access network
9.1.4 TWGate
9.1.5 ISP market
9.2 Broadband market
9.2.1 Overview
9.2.2 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
9.2.3 Cable modems
9.2.4 Wireless broadband
9.2.5 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH)
9.2.6 Advanced broadband options
9.2.7 Video-on-Demand (VoD)
9.3 E-services
9.3.1 Overview
9.3.2 E-commerce
9.3.3 E-banking
9.3.4 E-government
9.3.5 High-speed ISP services
10. GLOSSARY OF ABBREVIATIONS
Exhibit 1 - Asia’s broadband market - countries ranked by household penetration - June 2006
Exhibit 2 - Confusion surrounding DSL statistics in South Korea
Exhibit 3 - LMCS network operators in South Korea
Exhibit 4 - Estimated B-WLL frequencies in South Korea


Table 1 - Internet user growth in Asia - 1999 - 2006
Table 2 - Top 10 Asian countries by Internet user penetration - December 2005
Table 3 - Internet and broadband subscribers for selected Asian markets - December 2005
Table 4 - International Internet bandwidth - 2000 - 2005
Table 5 - Broadband in Asia - Major markets by subscribers and penetration - 2005/2006
Table 6 - Major broadband access types (by subscribers) - March 2006
Table 7 - Asia’s DSL market - December 2005
Table 8 - DSL subscribers in Major Asian countries - March 2006
Table 9 - DSL subscribers in Japan - 2000 - 2006
Table 10 - DSL subscribers in South Korea - 1999 - 2006
Table 11 - DSL subscribers in China - 2000 - 2006
Table 12 - PCCW’s DSL subscriber base - December 2005
Table 13 - DSL subscribers in Hong Kong - 1999 - 2006
Table 14 - DSL subscribers in Singapore - 2000 - 2006
Table 15 - DSL subscribers in Taiwan - 2001 - 2006
Table 16 - DSL subscribers in Malaysia - 2001 - 2006
Table 17 - Cable modem subscribers per main country - March 2006
Table 18 - FttH growth in Japan - 2001 - 2006
Table 19 - WiFi hotspots in Asia - 2004; 2005; 2009
Table 20 - South Korea’s broadband subscriber growth - 1998 - 2006
Table 21 - Taiwan’s broadband subscriber growth - 1999 - 2006
Table 22 - Singapore’s broadband subscriber growth - 1999 - 2006
Table 23 - Broadband subscribers and households in Hong Kong - February 2006
Table 24 - China’s broadband subscriber growth - 2000 - 2006
Table 25 - Internet provider statistics in China - 2005
Table 26 - Internet user statistics in China - 2005
Table 27 - CNNIC Internet surveys in China - 2003 - 2005
Table 28 - Internet users in China - 1996 - 2005
Table 29 - Internet host computers in China - 1994 - 2005
Table 30 - Registered domain names by code in China - January 2006
Table 31 - Broadband subscriber growth in China - 2000 - 2006
Table 32 - Broadband subscribers and annual growth by access in China - 2005
Table 33 - Broadband statistics in China - 2005
Table 34 - Cable modem Internet subscribers in China - 2000 - 2006
Table 35 - DSL Internet subscribers in China - 2000 - 2006
Table 36 - Purchases* on e-commerce websites in China - 2004 - 2005
Table 37 - Share of China’s online search market - March 2005
Table 38 - Internet provider statistics in Hong Kong - 2006
Table 39 - Internet user statistics in Hong Kong - February 2006
Table 40 - Internet user growth in Hong Kong - 1996 - 2006
Table 41 - Internet subscribers by access type in Hong Kong - March 2006
Table 42 - Internet host computers in Hong Kong - 1994 - 2005
Table 43 - Internet traffic volume (PSTN)* in Hong Kong - 1997 - 2006
Table 44 - Internet traffic volume (Broadband)* in Hong Kong - 2000 - 2006
Table 45 - Registered domain names in Hong Kong - April 2006
Table 46 - Average residential web usage in Hong Kong - 2004
Table 47 - Pacific Internet subscribers by access type in Hong Kong - 2004 - 2005
Table 48 - Broadband subscribers in Hong Kong - 2000 - 2006
Table 49 - Broadband statistics in Hong Kong - February 2006
Table 50 - DSL subscriber growth in Hong Kong - 1999 - 2006
Table 51 - Cable modem subscriber growth in Hong Kong - 2003 - 2006
Table 52 - i-Cable broadband subscribers in Hong Kong - 2000 - 2006
Table 53 - Web usage and growth in Hong Kong - February 2005
Table 54 - Online trading volumes in Hong Kong - 2001 - 2004
Table 55 - Internet user statistics in Japan - 2006
Table 56 - Internet provider statistics in Japan - 2005
Table 57 - Broadband statistics in Japan - 2005
Table 58 - Cable modem, ADSL and FttH subscriber growth in Japan - 1998 - 2005
Table 59 - Overall broadband subscriber growth in Japan - 2000 - 2005
Table 60 - Internet users in Macau - 1996 - 2006
Table 61 - Internet host computers in Macau - 1994 - 2004
Table 62 - Internet provider statistics in Macau - April 2006
Table 63 - Internet user statistics in Macau - 2005
Table 64 - Broadband statistics in Macau - April 2006
Table 65 - ADSL subscriber growth in Macau - 2001 - 2006
Table 66 - Internet users and subscribers in Mongolia - 1996 - 2005
Table 67 - Internet host computers in Mongolia - 1996 - 2005
Table 68 - Growth of international bandwidth in Mongolia - 2000 - 2005
Table 69 - Internet provider statistics in Mongolia - 2005
Table 70 - Internet user statistics in Mongolia - 2005
Table 71 - Internet provider statistics in South Korea - 2005
Table 72 - Internet user statistics in South Korea - 2005
Table 73 - Broadband statistics in South Korea - 2005
Table 74 - Broadband Internet subscriber growth and population penetration in South Korea - 1998 - 2006
Table 75 - Broadband Internet subscriber numbers by system in South Korea - 1998 - 2006
Table 76 - Broadband market share by provider in South Korea - January 2006
Table 77 - Cable modem subscribers in South Korea - 2000 - 2006
Table 78 - ADSL subscribers in South Korea - 2000 - 2006
Table 79 - Internet provider statistics in Taiwan - 2005
Table 80 - Internet user statistics in Taiwan - 2006
Table 81 - Internet users in Taiwan - 1996 - 2005
Table 82 - Internet subscribers by access method in Taiwan - March 2006
Table 83 - Internet host computers in Taiwan - 1993 - 2005
Table 84 - Broadband subscriber growth and proportion of Internet subscribers in Taiwan - 2000 - 2006
Table 85 - Broadband subscriber and market share by access in Taiwan - December 2005
Table 86 - Broadband statistics in Taiwan - March 2006
Table 87 - DSL subscriber growth in Taiwan - 2001 - 2005
Table 88 - Cable modem subscriber growth in Taiwan - 2002 - 2005
Table 89 - GigaMedia broadband subscribers in Taiwan - 1999 - 2005

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