Argentina - Mobile Infrastructure, Broadband, Operators - Statistics and Analyses

Synopsis

Argentina has one of the most dynamic mobile markets in Latin America, being the third largest in the region after Brazil and Mexico. Mobile penetration was about 140% by mid-2015, with a slight fall in the number of subscribers yon following a period of annual growth of 3-4%. Many Argentineans own multiple SIM cards, some having different phones for work and personal calls, some having a phone for each mobile company to take advantage of special offers, and some requiring an additional SIM card for mobile broadband.

Three mobile companies compete neck-and-neck, with América Móvil’s Claro the market leader, controlling about a third of the mobile market by subscribers. The other significant players are Telecom Personal (the mobile unit of Telecom Argentina, controlled by Telecom Italia and in the process of being sold) and Telefónica’s Movistar. Nextel has a small market share, while Fecosur, an association of fixed-line telecom cooperatives, offers services as a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), under the Nuestro brand.

Argentina’s smartphone penetration is relatively high for the region, though it continues to be held back by the high cost of devices. Significant changes to the reliability of mobile networks are anticipated during the next few years following the auction of spectrum in the 700MHz and 1700-2100MHz bands, which increased the available spectrum for operators to 380MHz. Most of the spectrum has been set aside for LTE, while 37.5MHz was reserved for 2G and 3G. The new licensing will bring significant investment and infrastructure development to the market.

This report provides an overview of Argentina’s mobile market and a brief profile of the mobile operators. It contains key market statistics and analyses on regulatory matters, as also scenario forecasts up to 2020.

Key developments:

Spectrum in the 700MHz bloc allocated to licensees; revised set of rules and procedures for MVNOs established; multi-spectrum auction for 3G and LTE services delivers $2.233 billion; roaming deal with Chile and Peru on the cards; MNOs sign MoU on Calling Party Pays rules; Claro Argentina investing $400 million annually in infrastructure, Arsat awarded 25% of Argentina’s mobile spectrum, provides wholesale mobile services under the Libre.ar brand; MNOs offer handsets with built-in FTA air digital terrestrial TV reception; new law regulates Mobile Virtual Network Operators; MNP rules amended; Claro launches OTT service Clarovideo in Argentina; telcos’ operating data to Q2 2015; recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report include:

Claro, Telecom Personal, Movistar, Nextel, Nuestro Móvil, Libre.ar, Virgin Mobile, Tesacom.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Synopsis
  • 2. Market analysis – recent developments
  • 3. Mobile statistics
    • 3.1 General statistics
    • 3.2 Mobile voice
      • 3.2.1 Prepaid
    • 3.3 Mobile data
      • 3.3.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
    • 3.4 Mobile broadband
    • 3.5 Forecasts
      • 3.5.1 Scenario 1 – higher mobile market growth
      • 3.5.2 Scenario 2 – lower mobile market growth
      • 3.5.3 Notes on scenario forecasts
  • 4. Regulatory issues
    • 4.1 Spectrum auctions
    • 4.2 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
    • 4.3 Calling Party Pays (CCP)
    • 4.4 Roaming
  • 5. Mobile infrastructure
    • 5.1 Digital networks
      • 5.1.1 Third Generation (3G; UMTS)
      • 5.1.2 Long-term Evolution (LTE)
    • 5.2 Other infrastructure developments
      • 5.2.1 Mobile satellite
  • 6. Major mobile operators
    • 6.1 Claro (previously CTI Móvil)
    • 6.2 Telecom Personal
    • 6.3 Movistar
    • 6.4 Nextel Argentina
    • 6.5 Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO)
      • 6.5.1 Nuestro Móvil
      • 6.5.2 Libre.ar
  • 7. Mobile content and applications
    • 7.1 m-TV
  • 8. Mobile handsets
  • 9. Related reports
  • Table 1 – Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration – 1998 - 2004
  • Table 2 – Mobile subscribers and penetration – 2005 - 2015
  • Table 3 – Historic - Mobile operators’ market share – 1999 - 2004
  • Table 4 – Mobile operators’ market share – 1999 - 2014
  • Table 5 – Evolution of mobile ARPU in Argentina – major operators – 2010 - 2012
  • Table 6 – Mobile prepaid/postpaid ratio – 2004 - 2015
  • Table 7 – Mobile broadband subscribers and penetration – 2008 - 2015
  • Table 8 – Forecast mobile subscribers – 2015; 2017; 2020
  • Table 9 – Claro – mobile subscribers – 1999 - 2015
  • Table 10 – Claro – wireless revenue – 2013 - 2015
  • Table 11 – Personal – mobile subscribers – 1999 - 2015
  • Table 12 – Personal – mobile ARPU – 2012 - 2014
  • Table 13 – Personal – mobile service revenue – 2012 - 2014
  • Table 14 – Movistar – mobile subscribers – 1999 - 2015
  • Table 15 – Movistar – mobile revenue – 2009 - 2015
  • Table 16 – Movistar – mobile ARPU – 2008 - 2015
  • Table 17 – Nextel mobile revenue – 2012 - 2015
  • Table 18 – Nextel mobile ARPU – 2012 - 2015
  • Table 19 – Nextel – mobile subscribers – 2002 - 2015
  • Chart 1 – Mobile subscribers and penetration – 2005 – 2015
  • Chart 2 – Mobile market share at a glance – 2004 - 2014
  • Exhibit 1 – Claro at a glance
  • Exhibit 2 – Telecom Personal at a glance
  • Exhibit 3 – Movistar at a glance

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