Cyta to follow by summer as market share drops to 66%
Private telcos MTN and PrimeTel are introducing highspeed fourth generation (4G) connectivity this week over the LTE (Long Term Evolution) service, with state-owned Cyta expected to follow by summer, with market shares in mobile telephony expected to oscillate according to each provider’s marketing strength.
The total number of mobile subscribers has reached 1,109,188 according to the latest available data from telecoms regulator OCECPR up to June 2014. Of these, contract subscribers overtook the prepaid subscribers for the first time, with 562,072 compared to 547,116 or 50.67% against 49.33%. The mobile penetration rate rose by 1 percentage point to 129% of the population, a level it has maintained since June 2011.
Subscribers of both contract and pre-paid smartphones will be lured by the providers’ offers of theoretical speeds of 100 Mbps for downloads and up to 45 Mbps for uploads, while real numbers are expected to be around 60-70 Mbps for downloads and 25-35 Mbps for uploads. The current HSPA+ network could only attain speeds of 14.4 Mbps.
The high speed mobile connections will allow users of smartphones as well as tablets and notebooks to load pages much faster, even on wireless (wifi) networks, while faster speeds will be attained where there is a landline connection to the Internet, such as at home and at work.
Services such as multimedia, HD streaming and HD video-conferencing, as well as sending and receiving large files will now become easier.
“Subscribers demand the best available service everywhere, fast speeds for download and upload, and without delays or buffering,” said PrimeTel’s Chief Commercial Officer Theodosis Theodosiou, adding that his company has invested money and knowhow in developing such a high-speed network.
PrimeTel said in an announcement that speeds will reach 70Mbps at first stage.
“Contract and prepaid devices and use Mobile subscribers who Internet will be have 4G/LTE able to enjoy unbelievable speeds on the 4G additional cost,” Theodosiou added.
Cyta will have a difficult time to catch up with rivals MTN and PrimeTel, as its delay to introduce its own 4G network will cost it market share at a time when the other providers are enjoying the launches in the past two weeks of brand new smartphoen devices, especially new launches at the Barcelona Mobile Congress.
Data from regulator OCECPR data shows that Cyta has
any gradually been losing market share to MTN over the years, dropping from 81.14% six years ago to 66.07% last June, while MTN has grown from 18.87% in June 2009 to 30.09% last June, with newcomers PrimeTel that came onto the scene four years ago edging up to 2.71% last June and LemonTel and Callsat sharing 1%.
Despite the numbers, though, the statements by MTN executives of catching up with Cyta and possibly even reaching a 50% market share have not been realised