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Uruguay - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Uruguay - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Uruguay's fibre market continues strong growth

Uruguay enjoys one of the highest broadband penetration rates in Latin America, and the second highest fixed-line teledensity rate after Costa Rica. Mobile penetration is the second highest after Panama. In terms of computer penetration, Uruguay tops all other countries in the region by a considerable margin, and this has facilitated growth in fixed-line broadband adoption.

Uruguay is one of the very few Latin American countries where the local fixed-line market is neither privatised nor liberalised. Antel, the state-owned incumbent, has a monopoly in the provision of local telephony and fixed broadband services. Other segments of the telecom market have been opened to competition, including international long-distance telephony, mobile telephony, and fixed-wireless broadband.

Uruguay is also one of the few countries in the world where broadband access via cable modem does not exist. Although cable networks are well equipped technologically, and digital cable TV is widely available, telecom legislation prohibits data transmission over pay TV networks. There are ongoing discussions over the need to change regulations and permit cable TV providers to offer broadband services. In December 2017 Claro won the right to offer pay TV services under a separate licence granted in 2008, which the government had claimed was void. Cable broadband would help strengthen the pay TV market, make bundled solutions more widely available, and give customers the freedom to choose their internet provider. Nevertheless, there is a fast developing market for OTT videostreaming services. Netflix has been available since September 2011, and other providers also compete.

Antel's Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) program is by far the most ambitious broadband effort in Latin America. With an investment projected to reach $800 million, the company expects to provide national FttP coverage by early 2022. Together with the FttP network, the opening the submarine cable system (Bicentenario) in early 2012 and the Tannat cable in August 2017 have helped boost Uruguay's internet bandwidth, and the data rate available to end-users.

The mobile market is dominated by Antel, with Telefónica's Movistar as second-placed operators and América Móvil's Claro a distant third. All three operators offer mobile broadband through 3G and LTE networks. Mobile broadband is the fastest growing telecom sector by far. Operators have achieved nationwide 3G coverage, which has attracted a growing number of subscribers outside of Montevideo. The number of mobile broadband subscribers continues to grow strongly. Antel has been at the forefront with LTE services, though the auction of multi-band spectrum in August 2017 has also enabled Movistar and Claro to widen the reach of their LTE offers.

Key developments:

Telefónica and Claro secure 700MHz spectrum at auction;
Further delays to ASO process;
Antel invests $30 million in Uruguay-Brazil cable;
Antel connects over half a million premises to Internet Vera fibre network;
Antel investing $800 million to provide national FttP coverage by early 2022;
International bandwidth increased to 211Gb/s;
Movistar extends commercial LTE services;
Report includes the regulator's market data for 2017, telcos' operating and financial data to Q3 2018, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Antel, Claro Uruguay, Movistar Uruguay, Dedicado


1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
3. Country overview
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Historical overview4.2 Market analysis
5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Regulatory authority5.2 Government policies
5.2.1 Telecom sector liberalisation in Uruguay
5.2.2 Privatisation5.2.3 Media Law December 20145.2.4 Ceibal Plan5.2.5 Internet for All (Universal Hogares)
6. Fixed network operators
6.1 Introduction6.2 Antel
7. Telecommunications infrastructure
7.1 Overview of the national telecom network7.2 International infrastructure7.3 Infrastructure developments
7.3.1 Fixed-wireless and Wireless Local Loop (WLL)
8. Wholesale
9. Fixed-line broadband market
9.1 Market analysis9.2 Broadband statistics
9.2.1 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) networks
9.2.2 Forecasts broadband subscribers 2019; 2021; 2023
10. Mobile market
10.1 Market analysis10.2 Mobile statistics10.3 Mobile data
10.3.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
10.4 Mobile broadband
10.5 Forecasts mobile subscribers 2019; 2021; 202310.6 Regulatory issues
10.6.1 Spectrum allocations and spectrum auctions
10.6.2 Spectrum auction 201310.6.3 Spectrum auction 201710.6.4 SIM card registration
10.7 Mobile infrastructure
10.7.1 4G (LTE)
10.7.2 3G10.7.3 Other network infrastructure
10.8 Major mobile operators
10.8.1 Antel
10.8.2 Movistar10.8.3 Claro
11. Related reports
Table 1 Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities Uruguay 2018 (e)Table 2 Evolution of GDP in Uruguay 2000 - 2018Table 3 Ratio of mobile to fixed-line phones - 1997 - 2017Table 4 Historic - Telecom services comparative change in price 2005 - 2013Table 5 Telecommunications contribution to GDP as % 2005 - 2017Table 6 Telecommunications contribution to GDP 2005 - 2017Table 7 Telecommunications services revenue 2010 - 2016Table 8 Telecom share of revenue by segment 2005 2016Table 9 Investment in telecommunications 2013 - 2016Table 10 Fixed-line services revenue 2008 - 2016Table 11 Fixed-line national traffic 2008 - 2017Table 12 Fixed-line traffic to mobile networks - 2005 - 2017Table 13 Fixed-line revenue 2008 - 2016Table 14 Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity 1997 - 2009Table 15 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2010 - 2018Table 16 Historic - Public payphones 1997 - 2009Table 17 Public payphones 2010 - 2017Table 18 International internet bandwidth 2001 - 2017Table 19 Historic - Internet users and user penetration rate 1997 - 2009Table 20 Internet users and user penetration rate 2010 - 2018Table 21 Fixed and fixed wireless broadband subscribers and penetration rates 2005 - 2018Table 22 Fixed-line broadband subscribers by platform 2011 - 2018Table 23 Fixed broadband operators' market share 2008 - 2017Table 24 Dial-up internet subscribers - 2008 - 2014Table 25 Dial-up internet traffic - 2011 - 2015Table 26 Data/internet revenue 2012; 2016Table 27 DSL broadband subscribers 2016 - 2017Table 28 Fibre broadband subscribers 2016 - 2017Table 29 Forecast fixed broadband subscribers 2019; 2021; 2023Table 30 Mobile market revenue 2008- 2016Table 31 Historic - Mobile subscribers (voice and data) and penetration rate 1997 - 2009Table 32 Mobile subscribers (voice and data) and penetration rate 2010 - 2019Table 33 Mobile operators' market share of subscribers 2002 - 2017Table 34 Mobile traffic 2008 - 2017Table 35 Mobile prepaid/postpaid ratio 2005 - 2017Table 36 Mobile prepaid and contract subscribers 2007 - 2017Table 37 SMS message volume 2009 - 2018Table 38 Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration rates 2008 - 2018Table 39 Mobile internet subscribers by speed 2011 - 2017Table 40 Proportion of mobile internet connections by speed 2014 - 2017Table 41 Forecast mobile subscribers 2019; 2021; 2023Table 42 Antel mobile subscribers 2002 - 2017Table 43 Movistar Uruguay mobile subscribers - 2002 - 2017Table 44 Movistar Uruguay mobile revenue - 2012 - 2018Table 45 Claro mobile subscribers 2004 - 2017Chart 1 Telecom revenue by segment 2005 - 2016Chart 2 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2005 2018Chart 3 Internet users and user penetration rate 2005 2018Chart 4 Mobile subscribers (voice and data) and penetration rate 2005 2019Chart 5 Mobile internet subscribers by speed 2011 - 2017Exhibit 1 Map of UruguayExhibit 2 - Licensed ILD operators in Uruguay

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