2011 Singapore - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband

Publication Overview

This report provides a comprehensive overview of the trends and developments in telecommunications and digital media markets in Singapore. Subjects covered include:

  • Key Statistics
  • Markets, Industry Overviews and Analysis
  • Regulatory Environment
  • Major Telecom Operators (Mobile, Fixed, Broadband)
  • Infrastructure, including NBN strategy
  • Mobile Voice and Data Markets
  • Internet, VoIP, IPTV
  • Broadband (DSL, cable, FttH, wireless)
  • Digital Media

Researcher:- Peter Evans
Current publication date:- April 2012 (17th Edition)

Executive Summary

Broadband prices fall as rollout of Singapore’s NGNBN continues

Note: A half yearly update has been completed on this report and includes new statistics to December 2011 supplemented by estimates where appropriate.

This report looks at Singapore, one of the outstanding telecommunications markets in Asia. At the same time as building its sophisticated telecoms infrastructure, Singapore has successfully promoted itself an IT hub and a place of excellence when it comes to all things to do with IT and telecommunications. The nation is determined to maintain its status and in the process it continues to embark on new and innovative telecom and IT projects.

With strong leadership from its government and good support from its telecom service providers, Singapore is both a regional leader and a global player in telecommunications. The island-state certainly generates a positive outlook in its local telecommunications sector. The country has built what is widely seen as a high quality and extremely progressive telecommunications regulatory regime that has, in turn, resulted in a richly competitive market. All restrictions on direct and indirect foreign ownership within the country’s telecom sector have been lifted. In such a progressive commercial environment, ‘over 100%’ of homes have fixed-line telephone connections, according to the telecom regulator. More than 20% of homes have two fixed line services.

Although incumbent Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) continues to play a major role in the local telecom sector, liberalisation has seen a host of new operators entering the market, helping to exploit the competitive situation. In the lead up to officially liberalising the market, the government issued five facilities-based and 29 service-based licences. Prompted by the arrival of strong competition in its own backyard, SingTel decided to expand offshore and, in what eventually turned out to be a successful strategy, the company has been able to establish a considerable presence in regional markets, including 100% ownership of Optus, the second ranked mobile operator in Australia. Its offshore presence includes subsidiaries in India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

And through its alliance with Bharti Airtel in India in has further market presence in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Africa. By the start of 2012 the SingTel group had 434 million mobile subscribers across its many markets.

Singapore has continued to grow both its mobile subscriber base (152% penetration by December 2011) as well as its value-added data services. The launch of 3G services has been particularly insightful. There was an obvious period of uncertainty surrounding the introduction of 3G. After launch in 2005 the take up rate was initially slow. Subsequently, however, there has been a strong upsurge in demand. No doubt this has been helped by the wider availability of more affordable, high feature handsets. By early 2012, there were more than 5.8 million 3G subscribers in a country where the total mobile market was around 7.8 million. In other words 3G subscribers represented a compelling 74% of the total subscriber base as 3G rapidly became the ‘normal’ mobile service in the country.

In the meantime, the Singapore government has begun promoting what it calls the ‘infocomm’ sector with the launch of a 10-year Infocomm Master Plan, labelled the Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015). This was followed by the the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) announcing in 2008 that S$1 billion (US$725 million) had been allocated by the government to support the building and operating of a national optical fibre-based network as part of what was called the Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure (Next Gen NII); the strategy also included a wireless network. The government was seeking to licence an Operating Company (referred to as the OpCo) and a Network Company (referred to as the NetCo). The OpenNet consortium won the role of the NetCo and took responsibility for designing, building and operating the passive infrastructure of the Next Gen NII). StarHub’s Nucleus Connect won the OpCo contract and the right to build and operate the wholesale broadband network across Singapore.

The roll-out of the national broadband network seemed to be proceeding at a good pace through 2011. Nucleus Connect had started offering commercial services on the network in September 2010. Network coverage had reached the required 60% of the population by end-2010 and by halfway through 2011 was on track to provide 95% coverage by mid-2012. However, at the start of 2012 the IDA intervened in the building process following concerns at the slowing rate of rollout.

Key highlights

  • Singapore’s overall mobile telephone penetration passed the 150% mark in late 2011;
  • The country’s 3G market continues to boom: there were around 5.8 million 3G subscribers by May 2011; this meant that 74% of all mobile subscribers are 3G;
  • The regulator has set new standards for quality of 3G services provided by the operators.
  • Effectively 100% of Singapore’s households now have some form of high speed broadband Internet access;
  • The Singapore government’s large scale project to build an island-wide broadband network called the Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure (Next Gen NII) is proceeding;
  • While the IDA had initially reported good progress on the roll-out of this network, in early 2012 it intervened in the construction process upon concerns with the slowing pace.
  • The IDA maintains the network will deliver universal coverage by the 2013 target.
  • Against the trend observed in most other markets around the world, fixed-line telephone services in Singapore remain remarkably resilient with what the IDA describes as more than 100% of households connected to the fixed network.

Singapore: - key telecom parameters – 2011 - 2012

Category

2011

2012 (e)

Fixed-line services:

 

 

Total No. of subscribers

2.02 million

2.05

Annual growth (e)

2%

1%

Fixed-line penetration (population)

39%

39%

Fixed-line penetration (household)

104%

104%

Broadband Internet:1

 

 

Total No. of subscribers

9.2 million

10.3 million

Annual growth

18%

12%

Broadband penetration (population)

152%

176%

Broadband penetration (wired, household)

104%

115%

Mobile services:

 

 

Total No. of subscribers

7.8 million

8.1 million

Annual growth

7%

4%

Total 3G subscribers

5.8 million

6.2 million

3G as percentage of total mobile

74%

77%

Mobile penetration (population)

152%

156%

(Source: BuddeComm)

Note: 1in 2007 the IDA changed its methodology to include not just fixed broadband services but all forms of wireless broadband resulting in a significantly larger total broadband subscriber base. 

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

Table of Contents

  • 1. Key Statistics
    • 1.1 Country overview
      • 1.1.1 Background
      • 1.1.2 Economy
  • 2. Telecommunications Market
    • 2.1 Overview of Singapore’s telecom market
    • 2.2 Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015)
    • 2.3 Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure (Next Gen NII)
  • 3. Regulatory Environment
    • 3.1 Regulatory authority
    • 3.2 Regulatory developments
      • 3.2.1 Services standards
      • 3.2.2 Service contracts
      • 3.2.3 Changes to Telecom Competition Code
      • 3.2.4 Consumer protection regulations
      • 3.2.5 Online scams
      • 3.2.6 Do-not-call register
  • 4. Major Operators
    • 4.1 Singapore Telecom (SingTel)
      • 4.1.1 Overview
      • 4.1.2 Corporate structure and subsidiaries
      • 4.1.3 Statistics
      • 4.1.4 SingTel Mobile
      • 4.1.5 Broadband services
      • 4.1.6 IPTV
    • 4.2 StarHub Pte Ltd
      • 4.2.1 Overview
      • 4.2.2 Corporate structure
      • 4.2.3 Operational statistics
      • 4.2.4 Financials
      • 4.2.5 Mobile services
      • 4.2.6 Broadband services
      • 4.2.7 Cable TV services
    • 4.3 MobileOne
      • 4.3.1 Overview
      • 4.3.2 Corporate structure
      • 4.3.3 Operating statistics
      • 4.3.4 Financials
      • 4.3.5 Business strategies
      • 4.3.6 Network development
      • 4.3.7 Other players
      • 4.3.8 New players
  • 5. Telecommunications Infrastructure
    • 5.1 National telecom network
      • 5.1.1 Overview
      • 5.1.2 Fixed-mobile convergence (FMC)
    • 5.2 Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure (Next Gen NII)
    • 5.3 International infrastructure
      • 5.3.1 Submarine cable networks
      • 5.3.2 Satellite networks
    • 5.4 Infrastructure developments
      • 5.4.1 International services
      • 5.4.2 IP networks
  • 6. Broadband Market
    • 6.1 Overview
    • 6.2 Background
    • 6.3 Broadband and internet statistics
    • 6.4 Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure (Next Gen NII)
      • 6.4.1 Background
      • 6.4.2 Network company (NetCo)
      • 6.4.3 Operating company (OpCo)
      • 6.4.4 Rollout
      • 6.4.5 Analysis – Singapore’s national broadband network
    • 6.5 Broadband service providers
    • 6.6 Broadband technologies
      • 6.6.1 Cable modems
      • 6.6.2 Digital subscriber line (DSL)
      • 6.6.3 Powerline broadband
      • 6.6.4 Fibre-to-the-home (FttH)
      • 6.6.5 Wireless broadband
    • 6.7 Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
  • 7. Digital Media / Digital Economy
    • 7.1 Overview
    • 7.2 Regulatory environment
      • 7.2.1 Singapore Broadcasting Authority (SBA)
      • 7.2.2 Media Development Authority (MDA)
    • 7.3 Regulatory developments
    • 7.4 Convergence
    • 7.5 Digital TV
      • 7.5.1 Adoption of DVB standard
      • 7.5.2 Transition to DTV
    • 7.6 Cable and pay TV
      • 7.6.1 Market overview
      • 7.6.2 SCV/StarHub merger
    • 7.7 Satellite TV
    • 7.8 Interactive TV (iTV)
    • 7.9 Free-to-air (FTA) TV
      • 7.9.1 Market overview
      • 7.9.2 Media Corporation of Singapore (MediaCorp)
      • 7.9.3 MediaWorks
      • 7.9.4 Merging of MediaCorp and MediaWorks operations
    • 7.10 Internet protocol TV (IPTV)
      • 7.10.1 SingNet’s mio TV
      • 7.10.2 StarHub
  • 8. Mobile Communications
    • 8.1 Overview
    • 8.2 Major mobile operators
    • 8.3 Market statistics
    • 8.4 Average revenue per user (ARPU)
    • 8.5 Pricing
    • 8.6 Mobile networks
      • 8.6.1 GSM
      • 8.6.2 Third generation (3G)
      • 8.6.3 High-speed downlink packet access (HSDPA)
      • 8.6.4 Fourth generation (4G) and long-term evolution (LTE)
    • 8.7 Mobile voice services
      • 8.7.1 Prepaid
      • 8.7.2 International roaming
      • 8.7.3 Satellite mobile
    • 8.8 Mobile data services
      • 8.8.1 Short messaging service (SMS)
      • 8.8.2 Payment systems
      • 8.8.3 Smartphones
    • 8.9 Mobile content and applications
      • 8.9.1 Background
      • 8.9.2 Mobile TV
  • 9. Glossary of Abbreviations
  • Table 1 – Country statistics – 2011
  • Table 2 – Telephone network statistics – 2011
  • Table 3 – Internet user statistics – 2011
  • Table 4 – Broadband statistics – 2011
  • Table 5 – Mobile statistics – 2011
  • Table 6 – National telecommunications authorities
  • Table 7 – Singapore’s GDP real growth rate – 2006 - 2012
  • Table 8 – Fixed-line versus mobile growth – subscribers and penetration – 1998 - 2011
  • Table 9 – SingTel – Singapore market – key operational statistics – 2011
  • Table 10 – SingTel mobile subscribers – 1998 - 2011
  • Table 11 – SingTel 3G mobile subscribers – 2006 - 2011
  • Table 12 – SingTel Mobile – key operational statistics – 2011
  • Table 13 – SingTel Mobile – ARPU – 2010 - 2011
  • Table 14 – SingTel – ARPU for mobile services – postpaid and prepaid – 2003 - 2011
  • Table 15 – SingTel’s fixed broadband subscribers – 2005 - 2011
  • Table 16 – SingTel’s mio TV subscribers – 2009 - 2011
  • Table 17 – SingTel’s regional mobile subscribers – 2007 - 2011
  • Table 18 – SingTel’s mobile subscribers by regional markets – 2011
  • Table 19 – StarHub – key operational statistics – 2010 – 2011
  • Table 20 – StarHub – proportion of revenue by market segment – 2011
  • Table 21 – StarHub mobile subscribers – 2000 - 2011
  • Table 22 – StarHub 3G mobile subscribers – 2006 - 2011
  • Table 23 – StarHub – operating revenue and capital expenditure – 2008 - 2011
  • Table 24 – StarHub - key operational statistics - postpaid and prepaid – 2011
  • Table 25 – StarHub – ARPU for mobile services – postpaid and prepaid – 2003 - 2011
  • Table 26 – StarHub’s fixed broadband subscribers – 2003 - 2011
  • Table 27 – StarHub – ARPU for broadband services – 2006 - 2011
  • Table 28 – StarHub Cable TV subscribers – 1996 - 2011
  • Table 29 – StarHub cable TV ARPU – 2003 - 2011
  • Table 30 – MobileOne subscribers – 1998 - 2011
  • Table 31 – MobileOne 3G subscribers – 2006 - 2011
  • Table 32 – Mobile One – operating revenue and capital expenditure – 2008 - 2011
  • Table 33 – Mobile One – mobile subscribers, market share and ARPU – 2011
  • Table 34 – MobileOne – ARPU for mobile services – postpaid and prepaid – 2002 - 2011
  • Table 35 – Fixed lines in service and penetration – 1998 - 2012
  • Table 36 – Overview of fixed-line subscribers – 2011
  • Table 37 – Broadband subscribers – 1999 - 2012
  • Table 38 – Overview of broadband/household subscribers – 2011
  • Table 39 – Broadband subscribers by sector – 2011
  • Table 40 – Broadband market share – by access type – 2011
  • Table 41 – Overview of internet market – 2011
  • Table 42 –Internet users – 1996 - 2012
  • Table 43 – Fixed internet subscribers – 1997 - 2012
  • Table 44 – Registered domain names – February 2012
  • Table 45 – Fixed broadband subscribers, annual change, market share by major providers – 2011
  • Table 46 – Cable modem subscribers – 2000 - 2011
  • Table 47 – DSL subscribers – 2000 - 2011
  • Table 48 – Wireless broadband subscribers – 2007 - 2011
  • Table 49 – Key broadcasting statistics – 2011
  • Table 50 – Broadcasting – homes, subscribers and sector revenue – 1996 - 2010
  • Table 51 – Cable TV subscribers – transition from analogue to digital - 2002 - 2009
  • Table 52 – SingTel’s mio TV subscribers – 2007 - 2011
  • Table 53 – Singapore – mobile operators, subscribers and annual change – 2011
  • Table 54 – Singapore – mobile operators by share of total mobile market – 2011
  • Table 55 – Singapore – mobile operators by share of total mobile market – 2010
  • Table 56 – Singapore – estimated 3G mobile subscribers by operator – 2011
  • Table 57 –Mobile subscribers - 2G and 3G, prepaid and postpaid – 2011
  • Table 58 – Mobile subscribers – 1997 - 2012
  • Table 59 – Mobile services revenue – 1993 - 2010
  • Table 60 – Fixed-line versus mobile subscriptions and teledensity – 2011
  • Table 61 – Overall mobile services ARPU – 2002 - 2011
  • Table 62 – Singapore – mobile operators – ARPU – postpaid and prepaid – 2011
  • Table 63 – 3G mobile subscribers – 2005 - 2011
  • Table 64 – Prepaid subscribers – 1999 - 2011
  • Table 65 – Prepaid vs postpaid – share of 2G market – 2007 - 2011
  • Table 66 –Mobile subscribers – prepaid and postpaid – 2G and 3G – 2011
  • Table 67 – Total SMS messages per month – 2004 - 2011
  • Chart 1 – Fixed and mobile subscribers – 2001 - 2011
  • Chart 2 – StarHub financials – 2007 - 2010
  • Chart 3 – MobileOne financials – 2007 - 2010
  • Chart 4 – Fixed broadband subscribers – DSL and cable modem – 2001 - 2011
  • Chart 5 – Singapore – mobile subscribers and ARPU – 2002 - 2011
  • Exhibit 1 – A snapshot of the Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015) project
  • Exhibit 2 – Key regulatory and liberalisation developments – 2000 - 2012
  • Exhibit 3 – Major shareholders in SingTel – May 2011
  • Exhibit 4 – SingTel’s regional subsidiaries and shareholdings – 2010
  • Exhibit 5 – Major shareholders in StarHub – February 2012
  • Exhibit 6 – Major shareholders in Mobile One – February 2011
  • Exhibit 7 – International submarine cable systems with landing points in Singapore – 2011
  • Exhibit 8 – Structure of National Broadband Network
  • Exhibit 9 – Licensed satellite broadcasters
  • Exhibit 10 – Third generation licensees, spectrum and vendors
  • Exhibit 11– SMS and advertising
  • Exhibit 12 – Self-regulation of content

Related Reports

Purchase this Report

US$250.00

Licence Information

Share this Report

Purchase with Confidence

As usual, you’ve done a splendid job of bringing an industry well and truly into the spotlight.

I think that without your input and passion, Australia would have barely scratched the surface of the benefits that can and will be achieved with the wholesale adoption of Smart Grid and Smart City concepts.

Glenn Latch, SKYZER TECHNOLOGIES

Special Offers

Global Telecoms - Key Trends for 2019 - IoT, Data Management, 5G and AI
US$1,000.00 until 26 Jun 2019
(normal price US$2,000.00)

Global Smart Cities - Planning for a Sustainable Future - Analysis and Trends
US$795.00 until 26 Jun 2019
(normal price US$1,590.00)

Sample Reports

A selection of downloadable samples from our Annual Publications catalogue.


Download a Sample Report

More than 4,000 customers from 140 countries utilise BuddeComm Research

Are you interested in BuddeComm's Custom Research Service?

News & Views

Have the latest telecommunications industry news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to Paul's FREE weekly News & Views.