2018 Ireland - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

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Last updated: 26 Feb 2018 Update History

Report Status: Archived

Report Pages: 147

Publication Overview

This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Ireland’s telecommunications market. The report analyses the fixed-line, mobile and broadband sectors. Subjects include:

  • Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
  • Facts, figures and statistics;
  • Industry and regulatory issues;
  • Infrastructure developments;
  • Major Players, Revenues, Subscribers, ARPU, MoU;
  • Mobile Voice and Data Markets;
  • Broadband (FttP, DSL, cable, wireless);
  • Mobile subscribers and ARPU;
  • Broadband market forecasts;
  • Government policies affecting the telecoms industry;
  • Market liberalisation and industry issues;
  • Telecoms operators – privatisation, IPOs, acquisitions, new licences;
  • Mobile technologies (GSM; 3G, HSPA, LTE, 5G).

Researcher:- Henry Lancaster
Current publication date:- February 2018 (17th Edition) 

Executive Summary

Ireland’s National Broadband Plan left with a single bidder

Ireland’s telecom market has emerged from a long period in which it had been held back by low broadband uptake and a poor economic climate which hindered investment among operators as well as spending among consumers. The country during the last two years has recorded one of the highest GDP growth rates within the European Union (EU), and this has reinvigorated the telecom sector. Operators including eir, enet and Vodafone Ireland (in cooperation with the utility ESB) have extensive fibre-based networks deployments in pace aimed at providing 1Gb/s services, while the government is poised to award a contract as part of its National Broadband Plan by which all premises are expected to receive a service of at least 30Mb/s by 2022. This Plan, requiring an investment of up to €600 million, will greatly boost the adoption of IP-delivered content, including e-government, e-health and e-learning. Although only enet remained among the bidders by early 2018 the government is confident that the Plan can be achieved to schedule.

The downward trend for overall telecom revenue after 2010 was reversed from 2015. Nevertheless, the sector remains under pressure, with a discouraging 1.1% fall in retail revenue in the third quarter of 2017, year-on-year.

The mobile market is dominated by Vodafone Ireland and 3 Ireland, followed at some distance by eir. The market has room for a small number of MVNOs, the largest of which is Tesco Mobile. Investment in network upgrades with LTE has been supported by additional spectrum releases in several bands, to be used for mobile data services. In mid-2017 spectrum in the 3.6GHz band was auctioned, greatly increasing the overall amount of spectrum available.

In recent years the broadband market has developed strongly, supported by an improving economic climate which has revived investment among the key players, as well as government efforts to improve wholesale access. Vodafone Ireland and Sky Ireland both have plans to increase the availability of 1Gb/s services.

This report provides statistics and analysis on the key sectors of the Irish telecom market, presenting an overview of the regulatory environment, the fixed network operators and services, and telecom infrastructure. The report also assesses the mobile market, including regulatory issues, a snapshot of the consumer market, emerging technologies, and the growth of mobile data. In addition the report covers the fixed and fixed-wireless broadband markets, together with developments in related technologies such as FttP, powerline broadband and mobile broadband. The report in addition provides mobile and fixed-line broadband subscriber forecasts to 2023.

Key developments:

  • French holding company NJJ and the telco Iliad together acquire a 64.9% stake in eir;
  • Vodafone an eir withdraw from National Broadband Plan tender;
  • Regulator rules that eir make fibre networks available to altnets;
  • SIRO trials reach 10Gb/s data rates;
  • VDSL connections grew 21% in the year to September 2017;
  • Virgin Media Ireland looks to expand 1Gb/s service;
  • Vodafone launches a commercial NB-IoT service;
  • Report update includes the regulator's market data to Q3 2017, telcos' operating and financial data to December 2017, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Eir, BT Ireland, Smart Telecom, Vodafone Ireland, O2, eMobile; Tesco Mobile, Virgin Media Ireland, Casey CableVision, Digiweb, SIRO, enet, Sky Ireland.

Henry Lancaster
February 2018

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