Colombia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Publication Overview

This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Colombia’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:- November 2018 (17th Edition)

Executive Summary

Colombian government aiming to sell its stake in a leading telco

Colombia’s telecom infrastructure is reasonably well developed in the main business centres, where service availability is relatively high by regional standards. However, infrastructure remains poor in small urban centres and rural areas. The government has sought to address this with a number of public programs, supported by effective regulatory instruments, and has facilitated the entry of operators to the mobile market in a bid to improve competition and extend the availability of mobile broadband services nationally.

Colombia has about 20 local telephony providers, operating municipally, regionally, or nationally. Many of these started as private companies, but later became public concerns owned by their respective municipalities. The number of lines in service continues to fall steadily, with customers abandoning traditional phones in preference for mobile connectivity. As in other Latin American countries, most of the existing fixed telephone lines are concentrated in the larger cities, leaving the rest of the population under-serviced.

Broadband penetration is relatively high for the region, though growth in the sector has been hampered by poor fixed-line infrastructure in many of the country’s 32 departments. The government has launched several initiatives to increase broadband take-up, including the National ICT Plan 2008-2019 and the Live Digital for the People 2014-2018 program. These efforts have had considerable success, leading to far higher growth in the number of broadband subscriptions among the lower socio-economic groups in recent years. DSL has a declining market share, and fibre-based broadband has developed strongly though most infrastructure as yet is concentrated in high-density urban areas.

Growth in the mobile market has slowed in recent years though it retains significant potential, particularly in the mobile broadband sector where penetration is still low and where strong demand exists in rural areas where fixed-line infrastructure is poor. Claro, Movistar and TigoUne dominate the mobile market though a number of MVNOs are also active.

This report provides an overview of Colombia’s telecom market and regulatory environment, together with profiles of the major fixed-line operators and a range of statistics and analyses. The report also covers the fixed and fixed-wireless broadband markets, together with statistics and subscriber forecasts. In addition the report assesses the mobile market, including profiles of the major operators as well as analyses on market developments and emerging technologies.

Key developments:

  • MVNO Uff! Movil ends services;
  • Claro Colombia trials 5G technology;
  • Regulator increases spectrum cap for MNOs to help improve network capacity;
  • TigoUne sells 1,200 mobile towers to ATC, launches an M2M service;
  • Movistar launches commercial VoLTE services;
  • Regulator amends fixed-to-mobile MTRs;
  • Claro extends LTE coverage to 425 municipalities;
  • Government investing COP200 billion in national Wi-Fi network;
  • COP1.2 trillion to be invested in National Fibre Optic Project;
  • ETB expands its fibre service;
  • Level 3 Communications announces plans for a new 400Gb/s spur to the SAC cable;
  • Azteca completes 20,500km terrestrial cable connecting 80% of the country;
  • Report update includes the regulator’s market data to March 2018, telcos’ operating and financial data to Q3 2018, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Claro (Telmex Colombia/Comcel, Movistar, TigoUne (Tigo Colombia, UNE-EPM), Avantel, DirecTV, Uff! Móvil, Metrotel, Emcali, Virgin Mobile, Móvil Éxito, Globalstar, BT Colombia, Calipso, Caucatel, Colomsat, Synapsis, Telebucaramanga, Edatel, Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Santa Fe de Bogotá (ETB), Telefónica de Pereira.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Key statistics
    • 1.1 Country overview
  • 2. Telecommunications market
    • 2.1 Historical overview
    • 2.2 Market analysis
  • 3. Regulatory environment
    • 3.1 Historical overview
    • 3.2 Regulatory authorities
      • 3.2.1 Communications Regulations Commission (CRC, previously CRT)
      • 3.2.2 ANTV
    • 3.3 Convergence Decree
    • 3.4 2009 ICT Law
    • 3.5 Privatisation
    • 3.6 Telecom sector liberalisation
    • 3.7 Universal Service Fund
    • 3.8 Licensing
    • 3.9 Interconnect
    • 3.10 Access
    • 3.11 Number Portability (NP)
    • 3.12 Multicarrier system/Carrier PreSelection (CPS)
    • 3.13 Subsidies
  • 4. Fixed network operators
    • 4.1 Introduction
    • 4.2 ETB
      • 4.2.1 Privatisation and merger plans
    • 4.3 Movistar (Telefónica Telecom/Colombia Telecom)
    • 4.4 TigoUne (UNE-EPM Telecomunicaciones)
      • 4.4.1 Previous subsidiaries
      • 4.4.2 Edatel
      • 4.4.3 Telefónica de Pereira
    • 4.5 Claro (Telmex Colombia/América Móvil)
    • 4.6 Emcali
    • 4.7 Telebucaramanga
  • 5. Telecommunications infrastructure
    • 5.1 Overview of the national telecom network
    • 5.2 International infrastructure
      • 5.2.1 Submarine cable networks
      • 5.2.2 Satellite networks
      • 5.2.3 Terrestrial links
    • 5.3 Wholesale
  • 6. Broadband market
    • 6.1 Market analysis
      • 6.1.1 Government initiatives
      • 6.1.2 Broadband statistics
      • 6.1.3 Forecasts – fixed broadband market – 2019; 2021; 2023
    • 6.2 Hybrid Fibre Coax (HFC) networks
    • 6.3 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) networks
    • 6.4 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) networks
    • 6.5 Other fixed broadband services
      • 6.5.1 WiMAX
      • 6.5.2 Satellite broadband
  • 7. Digital economy
    • 7.1 E-commerce
  • 8. Digital media
    • 8.1 Videostreaming
  • 9. Mobile communications
    • 9.1 Market analysis
    • 9.2 Mobile statistics
      • 9.2.1 General statistics
      • 9.2.2 Mobile voice
      • 9.2.3 Mobile data
      • 9.2.4 Mobile broadband
      • 9.2.5 Forecasts – mobile subscribers – 2019; 2021; 2023
    • 9.3 Regulatory issues
      • 9.3.1 Spectrum regulations and auctions
      • 9.3.2 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
      • 9.3.3 Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
    • 9.4 Mobile infrastructure
      • 9.4.1 5G
      • 9.4.2 4G (LTE)
      • 9.4.3 3G
      • 9.4.4 GSM
      • 9.4.5 Other infrastructure developments
    • 9.5 Major mobile operators
      • 9.5.1 Claro (Comcel/América Móvil)
      • 9.5.2 Movistar (Telefónica/Colombia Telecomunicaciones)
      • 9.5.3 Tigo Colombia (Colombia Móvil/Millicom, EPM, ETB)
      • 9.5.4 Avantel
      • 9.5.5 UNE-EPM
    • 9.6 Mobile Virtual Network Operators
      • 9.6.1 Market analysis
      • 9.6.2 Uff! Móvil
      • 9.6.3 ETB
      • 9.6.4 Metrotel
      • 9.6.5 Emcali
      • 9.6.6 Virgin Mobile
      • 9.6.7 Móvil Éxito
      • Table 1 – Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities - Colombia – 2018 (e)
      • Table 2 – Evolution of GDP in Colombia – 2000 - 2018
      • Table 3 – Historic - Fixed and mobile market share of connections – 1998 - 2009
      • Table 4 – Fixed and mobile market share of connections – 2010 - 2019
      • Table 5 – Telcom market revenue (COP) – 2000 - 2016
      • Table 6 – Telcom market revenue (US$ billion) – 2000 - 2016
      • Table 7 – Share of fixed lines in service (major operators) – 2000 - 2018
      • Table 8 – ETB share of subscriptions by services (Bogota) – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 9 – ETB – lines in service – 2000 - 2018
      • Table 10 – ETB revenue by service – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 11 – Movistar – fixed lines in service (regulator data) – 2000 - 2018
      • Table 12 – Movistar financial data – 2015 - 2018
      • Table 13 – TigoUne – lines in service – 2000 - 2018
      • Table 14 – Historic - UNE – EPM financial data – 2015 - 2017
      • Table 15 – Claro fixed lines in service – 2006 - 2018
      • Table 16 – Claro revenue by sector – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 17 – Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 1996 - 2009
      • Table 18 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2010 - 2019
      • Table 19 – Historic - Internet users and user penetration rates – 1997 - 2009
      • Table 20 – Internet users and user penetration rates– 2010 - 2018
      • Table 21 – Broadband subscribers by access speed – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 22 – Total internet subscribers (fixed and mobile) and penetration – 2012 - 2018
      • Table 23 – Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration rates – 2002 - 2018
      • Table 24 – Market share of broadband lines by technologies – 2003 - 2018
      • Table 25 – Major broadband operators – market share– 2011 - 2018
      • Table 26 – Broadband subscribers by major operator – 2012 - 2018
      • Table 27 – Forecast broadband subscribers – 2019; 2021; 2023
      • Table 28 – Cable modem subscribers and penetration rates – 2003 - 2018
      • Table 29 – Movistar broadband subscribers (company data) – 2015 - 2018
      • Table 30 – DSL subscribers and penetration rates – 2003 - 2018
      • Table 31 – ETB fibre broadband subscribers – 2015 - 2018
      • Table 32 – Fibre broadband subscribers – 2012 - 2018
      • Table 33 – WiMAX broadband subscribers – 2015 - 2018
      • Table 34 – Satellite broadband subscribers – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 35 – Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 1997 - 2009
      • Table 36 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 2010 - 2019
      • Table 37 – Market share of mobile operators – 2001 - 2018
      • Table 38 – Mobile prepaid/postpaid ratio – 2005 - 2018
      • Table 39 – SMS messages sent – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 40 – MMS messages sent – 2013 - 2016
      • Table 41 – Mobile internet subscriptions by technology (2G, 3G, 4G) – 2011 - 2018
      • Table 42 – Mobile internet subscribers by operator – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 43 – Mobile broadband market share by operator – 2010 - 2018
      • Table 44 – Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration – 2008 - 2018
      • Table 45 – Forecast mobile subscribers – higher growth scenario – 2019; 2021; 2023
      • Table 46 – Spectrum allocations – 1993
      • Table 47 – Mobile numbers ported – 2011 - 2016
      • Table 48 – LTE subscribers – 2012 - 2018
      • Table 49 – 3G subscribers – 2010 - 2018
      • Table 50 – GSM subscribers – 2016 - 2018
      • Table 51 – Movistar M2M connections – 2014 - 2018
      • Table 52 – Claro Colombia subscribers – 2001 - 2018
      • Table 53 – Claro Colombia service revenue – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 54 – Claro Colombia mobile service revenue – 2016 - 2018
      • Table 55 – Movistar subscribers – 2001 - 2018
      • Table 56 – Movistar Colombia financial data – 2013 - 2018
      • Table 57 – TigoUne subscribers – 2003 – 2018
      • Table 58 – TigoUne subscribers (MinTIC data) – 2016 – 2018
      • Table 59 – TigoUne financial data (historic) – 2010 - 2018
      • Table 60 – Avantel mobile subscribers – 2013 – 2018
      • Table 61 – Historic - UNE-EPM mobile subscribers – 2012 – 2017
      • Table 62 – Uff! mobile subscribers – 2011 – 2018
      • Table 63 – ETB mobile subscribers – 2013 – 2018
      • Table 64 – Virgin Mobile subscribers – 2013 – 2018
      • Table 65 – Virgin Mobile market share of subscribers – 2013 – 2018
      • Table 66 – Móvil Exito subscribers – 2013 – 2018
      • Chart 1 – Share of fixed lines in service (major operators) – 2000 – 2018
      • Chart 2 – Claro revenue by sector – 2013 – 2018
      • Chart 3 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2005 - 2019
      • Chart 4 – Internet users and user penetration rates– 2005 – 2018
      • Chart 5 – Broadband subscribers – market evolution at a glance – 2002 - 2018
      • Chart 6 – Market share of broadband lines by technologies – 2003 – 2018
      • Chart 7 – Mobile subscribers and penetration – 2005 – 2019
      • Chart 8 – Mobile internet subscriptions by technology (2G, 3G, 4G) – 2012 – 2018
      • Exhibit 1 – Map of Colombia
      • Exhibit 2 – 4G auction results

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