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Namibia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

  • November 2016
  • 39 pages
  • Paul Budde Communication Pty Ltd
Report ID: 3102322

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Namibia's MTC triples mobile data speeds with launch of LTE-A technology
Although Namibia was slow to introduce competition in the mobile market, with a second operator not licensed until 2006, the market has since seen penetration rates rise to well above the regional average. A new player, Paratus Telecom, has now launched LTE services to compete with those offered by MTC. MTC and Telecom Namibia Mobile (formerly Cell One and Leo, now owned by Telecom Namibia) have entered the internet and broadband market with 3G mobile broadband services in a bid to create new revenue streams. MTC introduced LTE services in May 2012 and in mid-2016 it tripled data speeds through upgrading its network with LTE-A technology.

Fixed-line services are still a monopoly of Telecom Namibia, but as a member of the WTO the government plans to open the telecom sector to full competition.
Although Namibia's internet and broadband sector is reasonably competitive, with six ISPs active, its development was for long held back by high prices for international bandwidth caused by the lack of a direct connection to international submarine fibre optic cables. This changed in 2011 when the WACS cable landed in the country. International cable services were launched in May 2012. In parallel, Namibia is diversifying its transit access routes via adjacent countries.

The country's growth in broadband services has been helped by developments with 3G and LTE network rollouts, as well as by investments in national fibre backbone infrastructure. Several WiMAX and other wireless broadband services offer additional access options and are standing by to bring additional competition to the voice market as well, once internet telephony is deregulated.

Key developments:

MTC triples mobile data speeds with launch of LTE-A technology;
MNOs begin glide-path reduction in mobile roaming for Southern African markets; Regulator encourages mobile infrastructure sharing in bid to increase coverage nationally by 2030;
Regulator decides on leased line pricing glide path;
ACE submarine fibre optic cable upgraded;
Paratus Telecom launches LTE services.

Market penetration rates in Namibia's telecoms sector 2016 (e)
Penetration of telecoms services: | Penetration
Fixed-line telephony | 7.6%
Fixed broadband | 2.3%
Mobile SIM (population) | 102%
(Source: BuddeComm)

Companies mentioned in this report:

Telecom Namibia; Mobile Telecommunications (MTC); Cell One (Leo, Orascom); Powercom; MTN Business Namibia; MWEB Namibia; Africa Online Namibia; Internet Technologies Namibia; iWay.

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