|Iceland Telecommunications Research|
Iceland - Telecoms, IP Networks, Digital Media and Forecasts
Revived investment in Iceland's telecom market following economic crash
BuddeComm's annual publication, Iceland - Telecoms, IP Networks and Digital Media and Forecasts, provides a comprehensive overview of the trends and developments in the telecommunications market in Iceland. It incorporates the latest operator and regulator data, and provides an overview of the telecoms market including the mobile voice and data, broadband and digital media sectors.
Restricted by having one of Europe's smallest economies, there is little room for growth within Iceland's telecom market. The market continues to suffer from the grim effects of the recent economic downturn, a situation which is likely to persist for the next two to three years at least. Iceland recorded Europe's first and worst economic collapse during the recent downturn, though telecom revenue proved resilient - mainly due to the nature of its being a crucial utility. Investment crashed by about 50% in 2009 as a result of liquidity difficulties, though it recovered in 2010 and further growth is anticipated in 2011 and 2012.
The government's economic forecast for 2011-2016 predicted that the economy would grow 2.5% in 2011 and 3.1% in 2012, driven by increased investments and consumption. Unemployment will remain high but falling steadily with economic growth.
The incumbent, Síminn, remains in a precarious position with creditors as a result of it having hedged against the falling króna and the failure of banks to honour their currency swap agreements. The company saw a 15% fall in revenue in 2010, obliging it to adopt efficiency measures and streamline its operations. Most other operators have also suffered as consumers reign in their discretionary spend. As a result, operators are unlikely to see revenue growth in the short term. Services on which they had hoped to realise significant returns, such as high-end mobile data applications, are expected to generate only moderate income during the next few years.
There is effective competition in all market sectors, with a small number of new players having emerged to challenge the dominance of the two leading players Síminn and Vodafone Iceland. The new entrants Nova and Tal have expanded their launched fixed-line services, complementing their existing presence in the mobile phone market.
Iceland - Key telecom parameters - 2010; 2012
Fixed broadband subscribers (thousand)109115
Fixed broadband penetration rate37%39%
Mobile broadband subscribers (thousand)110170
Fixed-line telephony (thousand)142130
SIM cards in service (million)341355
SIM penetration (population)117%124%
(Source: BuddeComm based on industry data)
Broadband adoption in Iceland remains among the highest in the world. FttH networks have been stimulated by government policies to deepen the fibre footprint in the capital and major outlying towns. Fibre is laid as standard in new-build zones and redevelopments, providing an important stimulus for high-end IP-delivered services.
The government ITC policy to 2012 is geared at enabling public services including health, education, government procurement, telecommuting and teleconferencing to be available online via a coordinated network, so stimulating further broadband uptake.
Síminn and Vodafone Iceland retain a duopoly of the DSL market, with a small number of other ISPs operating in urban areas. The DSL subscriber base continues to shrink as customers migrate to fibre and mobile-only options.
The mobile sector remains dominated by Síminn and Vodafone Iceland, with the two smaller players having secured only 6% of the voice market. Nevertheless, they have capitalised on their ability to offer 3G services in the 900MHz spectrum band, accounting for 55% of mobile data traffic in 2010.Henry Lancaster
Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.
This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Iceland's telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, Internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors. Subjects include:
Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
Facts, figures and statistics;
Industry and regulatory issues;
Major players, revenues, subscribers, ARPU, MoU;
Internet, VoIP, IPTV;
Mobile voice and data markets;
Broadband (FttH, DSL, cable TV, wireless);
Convergence and digital media;
3G subscriber and mobile ARPU forecasts to 2015;
Broadband market forecasts for selective years to 2020.Key developments:
Mobile 3G use reaches a third of all subscribers; projected mobile data use growth of 125% in 2011; mobile revenue slides 4% in 2010 and an expected 5% in 2011; telecom investment recovers from crash in 2009 with 22% jump in 2010; Síminn revenue falls 15% in 2010; DSL subscriber base continues to fall; operator and regulator data to end-2010.
Companies covered in this report include:
Vodafone, Síminn, Adrir, Nova, Tal, Alterna Tel.
This report is essential reading for those needing high level strategic information and objective analysis on the telecom sector in Iceland. It provides further information on:
Market liberalisation and regulatory issues;
The impact of the global economic crisis;
Telecoms operators - privatisation, acquisitions, new licences;
Mobile data market developments in coming years in light of spectrum auctions and new license awards in 2010;
3G developments, regulatory issues and technologies including HSPA and LTE;
Broadband migration to an FttH architecture;
Historical and current subscriber statistics and forecasts;
ARPU statistics and forecasts.
Last Update: 19 Jul 2011 Number of Pages: 36
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