French Polynesia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Executive summary

Smart telecoms initiatives to boost tourism in French Polynesia

Tourism has become integral to French Polynesia’s economy but in recent years this important sector has been in decline. In an effort to boost tourism, the Ministry for Tourism has launched a Smart Tourism initiative. This project plans to use digital solutions to improve the tourism experience for visitors to French Polynesia and will include projects such as expanding free wi-fi access, improving the Internet backbone using peer-to-peer mesh networks and offering a virtual reality tour of the islands.

French Polynesia has one of the more advanced telecoms infrastructures for the Pacific islands region. A submarine cable deployed in 2010 vastly changed the telecoms landscape for French Polynesia and the deployment of a further international submarine cable is under discussion in 2016.

French Polynesia is also well connected by satellite. The incumbent, OPT expanded upon its partnership with Intelsat in 2016 and this will see further opportunities developed to meet mobile broadband demand going forward. According to the ITU in 2015 there was 85% mobile broadband coverage in French Polynesia.

Key telecom parameters – 2013; 2016

Sector 2013 2016
Approximate subscribers to telecoms services: (e)
Fixed Broadband users 44,900 60,100
Fixed-line telephony 61,793 59,150
Mobile phone 243,300 282,100

(Source: BuddeComm based on industry data)

Key developments:

  • Fixed lines in French Polynesia have been in decline since 2011 with teledensity now sitting at just over 20%.
  • In 2016 OPT expanded on its existing satellite arrangements with Intelsat to include Ku-band satellite solutions on Intelsat 18.
  • French Polynesia has been identified as a potential market for smart grid deployment.
  • Between 2014 and 2015 mobile broadband penetration jumped considerably from 6.8% to just over 26%.
  • Emerging Beta 4G/LTE services are becoming available in 2016.

Companies covered in this report include:

Office des Postes et Télécommunications (OPT); Tahiti Nui Telecommunications; Galileo; Vini; Honotua Cable; Vodafone Polynesia.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Executive summary
  • 2. Key statistics
  • 3. Country overview
  • 4. Telecommunications market
    • 4.1 Historical overview
    • 4.2 Market analysis
  • 5. Fixed network operators in French Polynesia
    • 5.1 OPT
    • 5.2 Tahiti Nui Telecom
  • 6. Telecommunications infrastructure
    • 6.1 Overview of the national telecom network
    • 6.2 International infrastructure (satellite, submarine)
      • 6.2.1 VSAT networks
      • 6.2.2 Honotua cable
  • 7. Smart infrastructure
    • 7.1 Smart grids
    • 7.2 Smart cities
  • 8. BROADBAND access market
    • 8.1 Introduction and statistical overview
      • 8.1.1 Broadband statistics
  • 9. Mobile communications
    • 9.1 Market analysis
      • 9.1.1 Mobile statistics
    • 9.2 Mobile broadband statistics
    • 9.3 Mobile infrastructure
  • 10. Mobile handsets
  • 11. Related reports
  • Table 1 – Country statistics French Polynesia
  • Table 2 – Telephone network statistics – 2016
  • Table 3 – Broadband statistics – 2016
  • Table 4 – Mobile statistics – 2016
  • Table 5 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2006 - 2016
  • Table 6 – Fixed broadband subscribers and penetration rate – 2003 - 2016
  • Table 7 – Historical mobile subscribers – prepaid, postpaid and annual change – 1995 - 2011
  • Table 8 – Mobile subscribers and penetration – 2012 - 2016
  • Table 9 – Mobile broadband subscribers and user penetration rate – 2010 - 2015
  • Exhibit 1 – Galileo
  • Exhibit 2 – Major submarine cable with landing points in French Polynesia

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