2007 Europe - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband in Italy and Malta

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Last updated: 27 Nov 2007 Update History

Report Status: Archived

Report Pages: 90

Analyst: Stephen McNamara

Publication Overview

This report covers Italy and Malta, together representing one of the largest and most influential telecom markets in Europe, as well as one of the smallest yet technologically proficient. Trends and developments in telecommunications, mobile, Internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media including VoIP, VoD and IPTV developments are provided. Subjects include:

  • Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
  • Facts, figures and statistics;
  • Industry and regulatory issues;
  • Research, Marketing, Benchmarking;
  • Major Players, Revenues, Subscribers, Prepaid;
  • VoIP, IPTV, VoD, digital TV and DTTV;
  • Converging media.

Executive Summary

BuddeComm’s Italy and Malta Annual Publication, 2007 Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband in Italy and Malta, profiles two contrasting telecom markets. This report presents a concise overview of the telecom markets in Italy and Malta, providing key statistics on operators’ offers and performances together with their strategies to adapt to the increasingly competitive scenarios expected in coming years. It also assesses regulatory changes and their implications, and analyses the emergence of convergence and triple play services.

Italy’s mobile market is among the more dynamic in Europe, supported by a large population keen to adopt new services. The digital TV and broadband sectors have also progressed well. Italy also has one of the most advanced fibre infrastructures, with companies such as FASTWEB being among the top tier in Europe. Together with upgraded ADSL2+ networks, the widening fibre footprint has boosted popular take-up of triple play services, and will provide a strong foundation for IPTV, VoD and VoIP in coming years. For the country overview, see chapter 1, page 1.

Malta has Europe’s smallest telecom market but does not lag behind in technological developments. The incumbent was rebranded as GO in 2007, and its new owners have invested in infrastructure upgrades. By the end of 2007 there were three 3G licensees, and while GO is currently the island’s only quad play provider, Melita Cable and Vodafone both have ambitions to compete with full bundled services. For the country overview, see chapter 2, page 49.

Key Highlights

  • Malta has kept abreast with the rest of Europe in the digital TV sector. GO is a quad play service provider, offering fixed voice, mobile, broadband and DTTV, with TV services available to 95% of the population. For more information, see chapter 2.8.3, page 62.
  • Vodafone launched 3G in 2007, bringing Malta in line with the rest of Europe in this important market. Mid-year coverage was extended to most major settlements. GO Mobile launched its HSDPA network in early 2007, and soon afterwards reduced tariffs to make services more affordable to a wider range of users. For more information, see chapter2.9.4, page 66.
  • Malta’s third 3G operator was licensed August 2007. Network roll-out is being funded by Melita Cable, which will make the cableco the island’s second quad-play operator and providing greater competition against GO.
  • Italy’s mobile market is among the most competitive in Europe. Take-up of 3G has reached almost 24% of total subscribers by mid-2007, the highest proportion in Europe. Continued growth in coming years will be supported by the propensity to own multiple SIMs and by the popularity of emerging mobile data services. For more information, see chapter 1.8, page 35.
  • Italy’s triple play development remains one of the strongest in Europe, and continued to mature in 2007 on the back of ADSL2+ and fibre roll-outs. FASTWEB is one of Europe’s leading fibre players, investing €3 billion in infrastructure by 2010 to reach 11.4 million potential customers, representing about 50% of the market. For more information, see chapter 1.7.3, page 27.

Forecast broadband household subscriber growth Italy and Malta - 2007-2008

Year (e) Italy Malta
2007 33% 41%
2008 45% 52%
(Source: BuddeComm forecasts)

For those needing high level strategic information and objective analysis on this region, this report is essential reading and gives further information on:

  • The quadruple play offers from Malta’s GO and Melita Cable, together with Vodafone’s WiMAX ambitions to enable it to compete effectively;
  • The structural separation plans for Telecom Italia and the company’s commitment to convergence;
  • The improved Local Loop Unbundling conditions in Italy and their effect on increasing broadband competition;
  • The strong demand for triple play services stimulating higher bandwidth connections in both Italy and Malta;
  • The changing face of converged media with widespread triple play services becoming a standard feature in homes.

Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.

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