While mobile penetration is considered to be quite high in the Solomon Islands; internet penetration remains very low. Some rural and remote areas still lack access to mobile networks and in areas where it is available - the cost can be prohibitive. Many rural mobile base stations in the Solomon Islands also only support voice services; further inhibiting growth of mobile broadband services.
Satellite internet services have traditionally been too costly for citizens to access on a regular basis and ADSL is only available in limited locations. There are also geographic difficulties in deploying fibre-optic cables in the Solomon Islands. Remote islands are separated by large distances of open ocean, and almost all rural villages have no reliable power - if power is available at all. Around 85% of Solomon Islanders live in tiny functioning rural communities scattered across 100 populated islands.
The Solomon Islands is also vulnerable to the seasonal natural disasters including cyclones and earthquakes. Despite these significant challenges, the Solomon Islands government has acknowledged it is time to prioritise improving the telecoms sector and has outlined plans in its current National Development Strategy to do so.
In mid-2017, the Solomon Islands government formerly signed a contract to build a new subsea cable which will link Honiara to Australia (Sydney). The Solomon Islands Submarine Cable Company (SISCC) is in charge of the build, supported by Huawei – and it is planned to go live in early 2019.
|Subscribers to telecoms services: (e)|
|Mobile broadband subscribers||74,457||79,976|
(Source: BuddeComm based on industry data)
Our Telekom (Breeze); Bmobile-Vodafone; Kacific Broadband Satellite, O3b, Solomon Island Submarine Cable Company.
Companies (Major Players)
Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media
Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure)
Regulations & Government Policies
Number of pages 20
Last updated 5 Jul 2017
Analyst: Kylie Wansink
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