Peru’s mobile penetration, broaching 113% by the end of 2016, is on a par with the regional average though this hides the fact that about a fifth of the population has no mobile phone at all, while many Peruvians – especially urban dwellers – have multiple mobile subscriptions.
Four companies now compete in the mobile market: Telefónica Perú, trading as Movistar Perú, is the leading player with about 48% of the market. It is followed by América Móvil’s local unit, trading as Claro Perú, and by the rebranded Entel Perú (formerly Nextel Perú) in third place. Vietnam’s Viettel, trading as Bitel, is Peru’s fourth mobile network operator, which launched services in mid-2014. Viettel reported having signed up about 2.5 million subscribers by June 2016. The company has also launched LTE services, complementing its existing 3G network which covers more than 85% of the country.
In September 2016 Virgin Mobile became the first MVNO to launch services, hosted by Movistar.
After lengthy negotiations, Movistar’s licences were renewed in January 2013. Under the terms of the agreement, Movistar must invest about $1.15 billion to expand coverage to unserviced areas, and it must provide free broadband connections to state schools, healthcare centres, and police stations.
Peru’s mobile market still has considerable potential to expand, especially if economic growth continues to lift people out of poverty. Furthermore, due to the country’s low fixed broadband penetration, 3G and LTE services are expected to continue boom in coming years. With the expansion of networks and the declining price of laptops and smartphones, the use of mobile broadband and phone-based internet browsing is expected to escalate strongly. The auction of spectrum in the 700MHz band in May 2016 will greatly expand the reach and capability of LTE services nationally.
Accompanied by key market statistics and analyses, this report provides an overview of the market, a profile of mobile operators’ performance and strategies, and subscriber forecasts to 2021.
Additional non-validated SIM cards disconnected in October 2016 in an ongoing process; Virgin Mobile Latin America set up as an MVNO in September 2016; growth in number portability stimulating competition; new rules enforced to streamline deployment of mobile infrastructure; Claro Perú and Movistar Perú extend TD-LTE in remote areas; regulator claims MNOs need to provide an additional 7,145 base stations by 2025; Movistar launches VoLTE services, extends LTE-A services; DirecTV launches LTE services; Viettel launches LTE under the Bitel banner; National Bank Association ASBANC selects Ericsson’s Wallet Platform for mobile financial services; regulator auctions 700MHz spectrum for LTE services; report update includes the regulator’s market data updates to June 2016, telcos’ financial and operating data for Q3 2016, recent market developments.
Telefónica del Perú (Movistar), América Móvil Perú (Claro), Entel Perú, Viettel Peru (Bitel), Virgin Mobile.
Number of pages 21
Last updated 16 Dec 2016
Analyst: Henry Lancaster
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