CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Jan. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite the delayed auctioning of 3G spectrum in Thailand, mobile operators are moving forward with their 3G plans as data services continue to be the main driver of growth, according to a new report from Pyramid Research (www.pyr.com).
Thailand: Despite 3G Setbacks the Mobile Market Will Drive Future Growth offers a precise profile of the country's telecommunications, media, and technology sectors based on proprietary data from Pyramid's research in the market. It provides detailed competitive analysis of both the fixed and mobile sectors, tracks the market shares of technologies and services, and monitors the introduction and spread of new technologies.
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Operators have moved forward with 3G implementation in two ways: 1) receiving approval to upgrade networks to HSPA, and 2) signing MVNO agreements with TOT, notes Emily Smith, Analyst at Pyramid Research. "These solutions would serve as stopgap measures before the 3G auction, which could happen by early 2012," she says.
TOT is currently the only 2.1GHz 3G operator, serving the greater Bangkok region. TOT plans to invest $648 million in HSPA to cover 50 percent of the population by mid-2011, giving TOT a head start over the competition. "Data services have been the main driver of growth in the mobile market this year, which is why operators are eager to forge ahead with 3G before the auction," Smith explains. "Pyramid expects that 76 percent of Thai mobile subscribers will be data users by 2015."
According to the report, smartphone sales grew strongly at 18 percent from 2008 to 2010, and are expected to grow at an even higher 30 percent CAGR from 2010 to 2015. Along with this growth, usage of data applications like email, video, and Internet browsing will grow, as well. Data cards will exhibit the highest growth at a 63 percent CAGR, as 3G networks, which currently are only operated by TOT and only cover the Bangkok area, are extended to cover 50 percent of the population by June 2011.
SOURCE Pyramid Research