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Switzerland - Mobile Market Insights, Statistics and Forecasts


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

Switzerland’s mobile market has undergone considerable change in recent months, with two of the three mobile network operators changing ownership and the prospect of further consolidation should regulatory approval be gained for the potential merger of the second and third players. Mobile penetration is on a par with the European average while mobile data use among consumers has increased rapidly. Operators have upgraded their networks with high-end mobile technologies in a bid to encourage consumer use of mobile data services, thus providing some stability to otherwise declining ARPU. The regulator has encouraged operators to collaborate on a shared LTE network, so reducing investment costs, while pilot LTE projects are underway with a view to commercial launches later in 2012. In addition, GSM spectrum has been allocated for 3G use, thus enabling network operators to extend their 3G reach. A range of spectrum bands auctioned in 2012 will enhance operator abilities to enhance mobile broadband offerings. Mobile TV has also progressed, with Swisscom Broadcast having been awarded a national mobile TV licence using the DVB-H standard.

In this report we assess Switzerland’s mobile market, presenting an analysis on the regulatory environment and a profile of the main providers. We also assess data services, detail developments in mobile TV and other new technologies, and provide ARPU and 3G subscriber forecasts to 2015.

Key developments:

Orange Switzerland sold to private equity firm; multiple band spectrum auction raises CHF996 million; Swisscom launches M2M services; UPC Cablecom plans to launch as an MVNO; Orange prepares for LTE launch in 2013; regulator’s 2011 market report; telcos’ operating and financial data to June 2012; market developments to late 2012.

Companies covered in this report include:

Orange Switzerland, Sunrise, Swisscom Mobile, Zirkumflex, Migros, Coop Mobile, Lycamobile, Abalon Telecom, Mobilezone Yallo, Lebara, The Phone House, United Mobile Liechtenstein, M-Budget Mobile.


1. Synopsis
2. Overview of Switzerland’s mobile market
2.1 Mobile statistics
2.2 Mobile market shares
3. Regulatory issues
3.1 Spectrum regulations and spectrum auctions
3.1.1 Licensing
3.1.2 Digital dividend spectrum
3.1.3 Spectrum auctions
3.2 Number portability
3.3 Fixed-to-mobile call charges
3.4 Roaming
4. Mobile technologies
4.1 Digital
4.2 Third Generation (3G) mobile
4.2.1 Network sharing
5. Major mobile operators
5.1 Swisscom Mobile
5.1.1 Network contracts
5.2 Sunrise
5.3 Orange
5.3.1 UMTS/3G
5.4 Failed merger of Orange – Sunrise
5.5 Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs)
5.6 Mobile Virtual Network Enablers (MVNEs)
6. Mobile voice services
6.1 Prepaid cards
7. Mobile Messaging
7.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
7.2 Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
8. Mobile data services
8.1 General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
8.2 High-Speed Packet Access (HSPA)
8.3 High-Speed Circuit Switched Data (HSCSD)
8.4 Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE)
8.5 Long-term Evolution (LTE)
8.6 Mobile TV
8.7 M2M services
9. Mobile applications
9.1 Location-based services
9.2 Mobile ticketing
10. Forecasts
10.1 Forecasts – mobile ARPU – 2009 - 2015
10.2 Forecasts – UMTS subscribers – 2009 - 2015
10.3 Notes on scenario forecasts
11. Related reports
List of Tables and Charts
Table 1 – Mobile sector investment, UMTS and total – 1998 - 2011
Table 2 – Mobile operators, subscribers and annual change – June 2012
Table 3 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 1995; 1997; 1999 - 2014
Table 4 – UMTS subscribers – 2005 - 2011
Table 5 – Mobile revenue – 2000 - 2012
Table 6 – Mobile voice traffic – 2000 - 2012
Table 7 – Share of subscribers by MNO – 2007 - 2010
Table 8 – Mobile spectrum auction – 2012
Table 9 – Mobile numbers ported – 2000 - 2010
Table 10 – Mobile termination charges by operator – 2006; 2009 - 2011
Table 11 – European roaming charges – 2007 - 2012
Table 12 – Voice roaming charges by operator – 2011
Table 13 – 3G subscribers – 2005 - 2012
Table 14 – Swisscom Mobile blended ARPU – 2006 - 2011
Table 15 – Swisscom Mobile revenue – 2003 - 2012
Table 16 – Swisscom Mobile subscribers – 2006 - 2012
Table 17 – Sunrise subscribers – 2004 - 2012
Table 18 – TDC Sunrise revenue and annual change (DKK) – 2006 - 2010
Table 19 – Sunrise mobile revenue (CHF) – 2009 - 2012
Table 20 – Orange mobile subscribers – 2000 - 2011
Table 21 – Orange mobile revenue, annual change – 2005 - 2011
Table 22 – Orange ARPU – 2006 - 2011
Table 23 – Orange mobile data as percentage of revenue – 2003 - 2011
Table 24 – Prepaid subscribers and market share – 1998 - 2011
Table 25 – Swisscom Mobile contract and prepaid subscribers – 2006 - 2012
Table 26 – Swisscom Mobile prepaid share of subscribers – 1998 - 2012
Table 27 – Swisscom Mobile sent SMS and MMS – 2007 - 2012
Table 28 – SMS, PSMS traffic and annual change – 2002 - 2012
Table 29 – Average price of SMS – 2009 - 2010
Table 30 – MMS, premium MMS traffic and annual change – 2003 - 2012
Table 31 – Mobile internet traffic (historic) – 2003 - 2006
Table 32 – Mobile data volume, by destination – 2009 - 2010
Table 33 – Average price per MB sent – 2009 - 2010
Table 34 – Forecast mobile ARPU – 2009 - 2015
Table 35 – Forecast UMTS subscribers and penetration rate – 2009 - 2015
Chart 1 – Orange mobile subscribers – 2000 – 2011
Chart 2 – Prepaid subscribers and market share – 1998 – 2011
Chart 3 – Swisscom Mobile contract and prepaid subscribers – 2006 – 2012

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