2012 Switzerland - Telecoms, IP Networks, Digital Media and Forecasts

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Last updated: 15 Oct 2012 Update History

Report Status: Archived

Report Pages: 94

Publication Overview

This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Switzerland’s telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors. Subjects include:

  • Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
  • Facts, figures and statistics;
  • Industry and regulatory issues;
  • Infrastructure;
  • Major Players, Revenues, Subscribers, ARPU, MoU;
  • Internet, VoIP, IPTV;
  • Mobile Voice and Data Markets;
  • Broadband (FttH, DSL, cable TV, wireless);
  • Convergence and Digital Media;
  • 3G subscriber and mobile ARPU forecasts to 2015;
  • Broadband market forecasts for selective years to 2020.

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; Sunrise launched Sunrise TV service, updates IPTV functionality; regulator’s measures eliminate FttH network duplication; regulator increases minimum internet speed on Swisscom’s USO; Swisscom signs its twelfth FttH network construction sharing contract, minimum broadband speeds and maximum retail prices amended; plans for one million households to be connected to FttH by 2015; Laussane to be connected with FttH by 2017; minimum broadband connection upgraded to 1Mb/s; regulator redefines wholesale access prices based on fibre not copper; Swisscom takes €973 million write-down on Italian subsidiary Fastweb; Swisscom takes over Telecom Liechtenstein; regulator’s 2011 market report; telcos’ operating and financial data to June 2012; market developments to late 2012.

Companies mentioned in this report include:

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

Researcher:- Henry Lancaster
Current publication date:- October 2012 (11th Edition)

Executive Summary

Regulator’s fibre price and access conditions to spur sector progress

BuddeComm’s annual publication, Switzerland - Telecoms, IP Networks, Digital Media and Forecasts, provides a comprehensive overview of the trends and developments in the telecommunications and digital media markets in one of Europe’s more progressive markets. The report includes the regulator’s market data to the end of 2011, telcos’ financial and operating data to June 2012, and market developments to September 2012.

Telecom market overview

The Swiss telecom market has shown some weakening during the last few years as the country’s overall economy is dragged down by the region’s poor economic climate. In addition, revenue has been hit by the continuing effects of falling prices resulting from competition and regulatory measures. The number of fixed lines also continues to fall as consumers migrate to VoIP and mobile-only telecoms. Investments in the sector have been channelled to UMTS and 4G network upgrades as well as fibre-based networks, though such investments have been squeezed from liquidity issues and lower operator revenue. The regulator has endeavoured to encourage the deployment of fibre networks in coming years by regulating access conditions for Swisscom’s infrastructure and lowering wholesale pricing.

Mobile market

Auctions held in 2012 for spectrum in a variety of bands will considerably assist operators to deploy LTE networks in coming years: spectrum in the 800MHz band is available from the beginning of 2013, in the 900MHz and 1800MHz bands from the beginning of 2015, and in the 2.1GHz band from the beginning of 2017. LTE has been trialled by Swisscom in a number of areas, with commercial services being based on Ericsson equipment. Orange Switzerland, recently sold by France Telecom, also planned to roll out LTE services in up to 10 cities by the end of 2012, followed by a pilot phase in early 2013 and a commercial launch in up to six cities by the end of 2013. The operator is investing more than CHF700 million to upgrade and expand its network, including the launch of LTE.

Key telecom parameters – 2010; 2012




Subscribers by sector (thousand):

Fixed broadband subscribers



Mobile telephony



Fixed-line telephony



Penetration by sector:

Fixed broadband









(Source: BuddeComm)

Market Highlights

  • Multiple spectrum awards will greatly facilitate 4G services in coming years.
  • Pricing regulations for wholesale access to Swisscom’s network were upheld by the High Court in mid-2012, justifying the regulator’s programme to encourage competition in the sector and forestall a regulatory holiday for the incumbent.
  • UPC Cablecom’s plans to launch mobile services (as an MVNO) will strengthen its position in the rapidly progressing quad-play market.
  • A network building deal between Swisscom and the municipality of Laussane will see the city be connected with FttH by 2017. 

This report is essential reading for those needing high level strategic information and objective analysis on the telecom sector in Switzerland. It provides further information on:

  • Market liberalisation and regulatory issues;
  • The impact of the global economic crisis;
  • Telecoms operators – privatisation, acquisitions, new licences;
  • Mobile data market developments in coming years in light of spectrum auctions and new license awards;
  • 3G developments, regulatory issues and technologies including HSPA and LTE;
  • Broadband migration to an FttH architecture;
  • Historical and current subscriber statistics and forecasts;
  • ARPU statistics and forecasts.

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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