Chile's network builds improve outlook for streaming video

Parent Category: News | 16-10-2013

Latin America is ripe for the uptake of online and mobile video as networks get better, and according to Fast Market Research, the launch of 4G services by Claro in June 2013 was the biggest development in the quarter, marking the first deployment of the technology in Chile.

The company signed up 1,000 subscribers in the first month and expects 20,000 by the end of 2013.

The prospect of LTE/4G technology should help drive the market further, the firm said, encouraging subscribers to upgrade handsets and opt for more expensive data packages with Claro offering 4G subscriptions for $100 a month.

"This is particularly important for operators as the data for Q113 suggest the market is beginning to slow down, reporting the lowest year-on-year growth of all-time, having reached 152%," the firm noted.

Chile's mobile Internet market grew four times faster than its OECD peers, according to a new report from the international organisation.

Traditional satellite and cable pay-TV growth has been sluggish meanwhile subscriber numbers climbed by just 3.9% year-on-year in December 2012 to stand at 2.16 million. One of the factors behind this trend is the popularity of IPTV.

Subtel revealed that 1.099 million wireless and 116,686 fixed-line subscribers ported their numbers to other operators since the introduction of number portability in January 2012. In all, 616,686 prepaid subscribers and 480,571 post-paid customers had shifted their numbers to other carriers by June 2013.

Telefonica's subsidiary Movistar has lost the most subscribers with net losses of 167,398, while Claro has seen the largest gain with 160,969 net new subscribers. By the end of Q4 2012, mobile broadband connections had grown to 4.92 million and fixed broadband to 2.19 million subscribers.

Net additions have shown signs of slowing down in Q1 2013, the market gaining 417,000 in the quarter. This is due to maturation of the Chile market, the company said.

Chile also moved up into first place in the firm's Q4 2013 Risk/Reward Ratings. "Chile offers investors a stable operating environment and is one of the most advanced telecoms markets in Latin America with a strong demand for new technologies," the firm said.