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France - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

France - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

  • November 2018
  • 108 pages
  • ID: 5273171

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France begins closing down PSTN network
France has the third largest telecoms market in Europe, worth about €31 billion annually.


The incumbent telco Orange Group is one of the world’s major players with interests in markNoooets across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Despite market liberalisation, the company still dominates all sectors though increasing competition from a number of major players (notably Altice and Iliad) has gradually eroded this lead, prompting it to respond with a range of innovative offers and wide-ranging strategies to meet future customer needs. It is also investing in a national fibre network, largely in response to the activities of smaller players.
The mobile sector is dominated by the four providers Orange, SFR Group, Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile, complemented by an increasing number of MVNOs which together have a market share of around 11% of subscribers. The network operators have invested in network infrastructure and technologies in recent years. LTE-A providing data at above 300Mb/s has extensive coverage, while operators have undertaken 5G trials. The development of 5G has also been supported by the regulator which intends to auction spectrum for 5G use in early 2019 in anticipation of services coming into commercial use later in the year.

France has one of the largest broadband subscriber bases in Europe. Growth in recent years has been bolstered by demand for high bandwidth services, which has prompted considerable investment in fibre infrastructure among telcos and regional governments. This has been supported by regulatory measures which have promoted access to Orange’s copper and fibre infrastructure for new entrants, as well as a national broadband program which involves an investment of more than €20 billion. Progress in deployment has been rapid, while the take-up rate among consumers has also increased substantially.

DSL still dominates the broadband market in terms of access lines, though the number of DSL lines is falling as customers are migrated to fibre infrastructure. Fibre deployments have grown substantially in recent years, with all of the major ISPs concentrating their investments in the platform with a view to promoting 1Gb/s services. By June 2018 there were almost four million fibre connections, and fibre accounted for half of all superfast broadband connections nationally.

This report introduces the key aspects of France’s telecom market, providing statistics on the country’s fixed network, an analysis of operator strategies, and a review of the key regulatory issues including the status of number portability, wholesaling and carrier preselection. The report also covers the mobile voice and data markets, assessing recent developments related to spectrum licensing and regulatory issues, and profiling the major players and MVNOs. In addition the report reviews France’s fixed broadband market, focussing on cable, DSL and the fast-developing FttP/C sectors. It considers the strategies of the principal providers such as Orange, Iliad and Altice (SFR Group), and considers the regulatory status of LLU and access to fibre infrastructure

Key developments:
Orange stops promoting PSTN products;
Bouygues Telecom sets up Objenious subsidiary dedicated to the Internet of Things;
Orange sets up Orange Horizons subsidiary to exploit potential in new markets;
Regulator institutes revised spectrum coverage obligations;
Orange partners with Ericsson and Nokia to develop a path to 5G, launches national LTE-M service;
Regulator progresses with 2.6GHz and 3.5GHz spectrum use for 5G;
Government proposes new measures to fill gaps in broadband availability;
Altice increases footprint of its 1Gb/s FttP service;
Success of fibre co-investment deals among operators;
Report update includes the regulator’s market data updates to June 2018, operator data to Q3 2018, recent market development.

Companies mentioned in this report:
Orange, Iliad (Free, Free Mobile), Altice (SFR Group), Numéricable, Bouygues Telecom, Virgin Mobile, Omea Telecom, Bouygues Telecom

Please note: this report requires certain updates. We have all the information available but require 3 business days to complete the process and ensure it is as up-to-date as possible.


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