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Chile has one of the highest mobile penetration rates in South America. The number of subscribers has fluctuated seasonally in recent years though the overall growth trend has been stable. Much of the growth can be ascribed to the extensive availability of LTE networks which has encouraged take-up to take advantage of mobile data services.
Movistar and Entel remain the market leaders, with a similar market share, while Claro accounts for about a quarter of the market. Nextel Chile was sold in mid-2014 by NII Holdings and rebranded as WOM in 2015. The company has rapidly increased its subscriber base, partly helped by roaming agreements with all three other network operators.
There is a small number of MVNOs in the market, which together have only a minor share of subscribers. New entrants include Virgin Mobile, which has a presence in several other markets in the region.
Mobile number portability has helped to increase competition and reduce prices for consumers. Intermodal portability was introduced in September 2016, which allows subscribers to port numbers between fixed and mobile networks.
All three MNOs had launched LTE networks by 2014, and during 2018 operators trialled 5G. The regulator has also adopted its National Plan for 5G aimed at developing a consensus on services and spectrum use. The significant growth in the number of LTE subscribers in recent quarters highlights operator focus on mobile broadband and data services as a source of revenue in coming years. This is being supported by the growing adoption of smartphones, in turn driven by the popularity of social media and near comprehensive LTE population coverage, as well as by the reduction in the price of devices.
This report provides an overview of the mobile sector in Chile, including market statistics and profiles of mobile operators and key MVNOs. It also contains subscriber forecasts.
Entel, Movistar, Claro, Nextel, VTR, GTD, Virgin Mobile, Falabella.
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