Virus impact over each market - telecom operators, government agencies and regulators' responses - revised forecasts for the next 5 years.
Last updated: 20 Apr 2020 Update History
Report Status: Archived
Report Pages: 143
Analyst: Sebastien De Rosbo
This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Thailand’s telecommunications market. The report analyses the Telecoms Infrastructure, mobile, fixed broadband, Digital Media and Digital Economy sectors. Subjects include:
Researcher: Phil Harpur
Current publication date:- September 2019 (25th Edition)
Penetration in the fixed line market in Thailand has been declining at a significant and increasing rate over the past five years. A major reason for this is due to the dominance of the mobile segment and the growth of the mobile broadband segment. The market is predicted to further decline over the next five years to 2024 as both mobile and mobile broadband penetration continue to increase.
There is strong interest to establish Thailand as a data centre hub to serve the region. The size, capacity and spread of existing data centres in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) outside of Thailand is small compared with Thailand. Power stability is still a problem there to some extent, while network performance and quality limited due to restricted fibre connectivity. This is restricting customers migrating to colocation or cloud services within data centres.
The Thailand 4.0 vision has been developed from a realization that digital technologies can drive socio-economic development and economic growth of countries.
As a part of its Thailand 4.0 initiative the country had set itself the target of creating at least 100 smart cities within its borders over the next two decades.
The expansion of broadband internet in Thailand in the early stages saw widespread adoption of Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) services, together with some significantly lesser deployment of the cable modem option, as well as some broadband wireless access. The transition to these other technology platforms had previously been inhibited by the Thai regulatory environment which saw ISPs unwilling to invest heavily in the necessary infrastructure.
Fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) continues to grow strongly in major metropolitan areas. AIS commercially launched its residential fibre broadband service, ‘AIS Fibre’, offering connection speeds of up to 1Gbps via FTTH.
The Thailand market has witnessed reasonably strong growth in the fixed broadband market over the past few years from a relatively small base. However fixed broadband penetration remains relatively low compared to other developed Asian telco markets due to a limited number of fixed lines and the dominance of the mobile platform. Over the next five years to 2024 strong but gradually declining growth is predicted as the major providers continue to rollout their fibre networks.
Thailand’s mobile market is highly developed and has experienced strong growth over the last seven years, however growth has become much slower over the past few years due to the heightened level of maturity.
Very slow growth is predicted over the next five years to 2024 with annual growth rates further easing. The market will be constrained from higher growth due to a saturated mobile subscriber market and strong local competition.
Thailand is making good progress towards the launch of 5G services. In late 2018 the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) allowed operators to use the 26GHz spectrum range for the first round of 5G technology.
MNVOs in Thailand are generally struggling to compete with bigger rivals amid highly intense competition.
Thailand has seen a very rapid increase in mobile broadband penetration over the past six years driven by strong growth of 4G mobile subscribers. Slowing growth is predicted over the next five to seven years to 2024. The mobile broadband market will be driven by increasingly faster speeds offered by the mobile operators as they roll out their 4G and 5G networks and improving tariffs due to strong competition.
BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.
On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.
Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.
The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.
TOT Corp; CAT Telecom; True Corp; True Move; TT&T; AIS; DTAC; Thaicom, Triple T Broadband; AIS; DTAC; Cable Thai (CTH).
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