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Global Mobile - Regional Leaders - Countries and Operators

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Last updated: 21 Aug 2019 Update History

Report Pages: 205

Lead Analyst: Kylie Wansink

Contributing Analysts: Phil Harpur, Henry Lancaster

Publication Overview

This unique BuddeComm annual publication provides insightful analysis and statistics on the telecoms maturity and country leaders of a given region, across Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.

Specifically, BuddeComm’s Telecoms Maturity Index (TMI) measures and ranks the maturity of a country’s telecoms industry on a scale of 1 to 100. All countries are placed into one of three categories: ‘Market Leaders’, ‘Market Challengers’ and ‘Market Emergents’, according to their Market Index score.

Additionally, this unique BuddeComm annual publication identifies the leading domestic and international mobile operators from each region and provides current and historical subscriber data. A global overview of the mobile market sector is also provided, supported by key trends and industry statistics.

Researchers:- Kylie Wansink, Phil Harpur, Henry Lancaster
Current publication date:- August 2019 (4th Edition)

Executive Summary

Telecoms Maturity Index identifies leading countries and operators

It is interesting to compare countries around the world in terms of their overall telecoms maturity, especially as we are fast approaching the introduction of 5G. The transition to 5G will need to be underpinned by superior telecoms infrastructure based on 4G LTE and fibre-based broadband.

The operators are also of paramount importance in the current telecoms evolution. Many countries around the world have progressive domestic and international players which are heavily investing in infrastructure and services in order to be ready for the next wave.

In order to benchmark a countries telecoms maturity level with each region, BuddeComm has developed a unique Telecoms Maturity Index (TMI) which analyses the Broadband, Mobile and Fixed Line markets of specific countries at a regional level.

In Africa, for example, some of the countries within the top-tier rank, according to the TMI, includes Mauritius, as well as a diverse range spread widely in terms of geography, such as Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt and Algeria, which all benefit from good telecom infrastructure and high mobile and mobile broadband penetration rates. South Africa and Gabon are also notable in this region, with Gabon in particular benefitting from relatively high mobile broadband penetration.

Asia is arguably the world’s most diverse region with regards to its telecoms industry. A number of countries with large populations have attracted considerable investment from both vendors and operators. Hong Kong, South Korea and Australia feature highly in the Asia Telecoms Maturity Index.

The top-tier ranked countries within Europe are dominated by the Scandinavian nations. All have sophisticated telecom markets with competitive mobile and internet sectors. Not only is each market characterised by the early adoption of new technologies, but their respective governments and telecom regulators have also successfully aligned policies to ensure that national broadband coverage is achieved using the optimum technologies available.

Some of the countries in Latin America within the TMI top-tier include Uruguay and Costa Rica, both have among the smallest populations on the continent, and sit alongside others including Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, the last three of which have the largest markets in the region (supported by sizeable populations). These countries in particular benefit from having stronger fixed-line broadband infrastructure and penetration.

The Middle East is led by Qatar, Israel and the United Arab Emirates. All three have been identified as having the highest fixed and mobile penetration in the region, along with higher GDP per Capita. Both Qatar and the UAE are members of the Gulf Corporation Council (GCC) and benefit economically from natural crude oil and gas reserves. Israel’s economy is advanced by global standards.

Key developments:

  • BuddeComm's over 40 years of experience allows us to have a unique vision of the evolution of the global telecoms industry.
  • Global mobile subscriber growth continues in 2019 and while this is mainly due to growth in some of the emerging markets, it is interesting to see that some of the developed markets are also showing signs of steady growth.
  • The mobile network operators (MNOs), in both the developed and emerging markets, will continue to face daunting data demands from customers, many of whom make use of data-intensive graphics, videos and files shared across the networks.
  • Mobile broadband subscriptions are expected to rise in the years ahead. Around half of this growth will just come from five key countries including China and India.

Kylie Wansink

August 2019

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