Between December 2015 and June 2016 the number of fixed telephone lines grew by 40%, while the number of mobile lines grew by only 3% in the same period.
Figures from the Superintendency of Telecommunications in Guatemala show that the number of fixed telephones lines went from 1,710,000 in December 2015 to 2,400,000 in June last year, while the total number of mobile lines increased from 18.1 million to 18.6 million.
Preparations are being made to announce before the end of the year a call for the tender of 120 MHz of radio spectrum for mobile telephony.
Blanca Coto, chief of the General Superintendency of Electricity and Telecommunications (SIGET), told Laprensagrafica.com that they are"... 'soon to start the bidding process to broaden the spectrum available for mobile phones, to increase access'. "
9.3 million mobile phone lines were registered at the end of 2015, but they are only able to operate on the 3G network as the 4G network has not even been put out to tender yet.
While the rest of the region has already made progress in the use of 4G technology, in El Salvador the process for awarding frequencies of that band between telecommunications companies has not yet even started.In the developed world they are now planning the implementation of 5G technology.
The only countries in America where mobile phone prices are still regulated are El Salvador and Costa Rica. It is no coincidence that these countries are among the last in the rankings for speed of mobile internet services.
Imports of cell phones have grown by 10% over the past 5 years, going from $57 million in 2010 to $63 million in 2015.
Figures provided by the Business Intelligence unit at CentralAmericaData.com show that imports of cell phones measured in tons increased from 342 to 455 between 2010 and 2015. According to the Foreign Trade report by the Central Bank of Nicaragua,"... this product occupies first place in imports of durable consumer goods".
After declining by 22% in 2014, in 2015 the total number of mobile phone lines grew by 7%, with 18.1 million lines.
Of the total number of lines registered by the Superintendency of Telecommunications at the end of 2015, 95% are prepaid lines, a trend that has continued in recent years.
The 22% drop in 2014 has been attributed to the $0.65 tax that was proposed by the Pérez Molina administration to finance part of the 2015 budget, which was later declared unconstitutional and annulled.
After a reduction in 2015, mobile phone penetration grew again in 2016, registering a total of 156 lines per 100 inhabitants.
From a statement issued by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Telecommunications:
Costa Rica has experienced a trend of increasing penetration of mobile telephony in the last decade. According to figures from the Vice Ministry of Telecommunications, in 2006, 33 cell phone lines were registered per 100 inhabitants, however by 2015 there were a total of 156 recorded lines per 100 inhabitants.
The government has announced that before the end of the year they expected to tender part of the frequency spectrum which is not currently being used.
The Morales administration plan use the 700 MHz spectrum that is currently available on broadcast television as a part of the AWS band, allocating it to telecom operators in order to improve data transmission services.
An operator has warned that investments in the sector will be jeopardized by uncertainty regarding the renewal of concessions.
The breaking down of the relationship between the Salvadoran government and telecommunications companies has embarked on a new chapter. Uncertainty about whether the General Superintendency of Electricity and Telecommunications (Siget) will or will not auction 40 megahertz of the radio spectrum, is generating unease among some operators.
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