14% increase in number of optical fibre customers in 2nd quarter

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At the end of June, there were approximately 173 thousand Internet access customers in Portugal using optical fibre (FTTH/B), 14.2% more than in the previous quarter, with 95% of these customers reported as residential. Internet access supported over optical fibre (FTTH/B) represented 8.1% of total customers and during the quarter, and it was taken up by three out of every four new fixed broadband customers.

In total, the number of fixed broadband customers rose to 2.13 million, bringing the total number of users with fixed Internet access up to 2.15 million, 1% more than reported in the previous quarter and 7.1% than in 2nd quarter 2010.

In the same period, there were 2.6 million mobile broadband users registering actual use of the service, a decline of 0.6% compared to the previous quarter but an increase of 12% compared to 2nd quarter 2010. Of this number, 1.2 million users accessed the Internet via cards/modem.

The main technology used for fixed broadband Internet access continues to be ADSL, which represents 49.8% of the total. For the first time since the end of 2004, the number of ADSL accesses fell below 50% of total broadband accesses. For the third consecutive quarter, ADSL is showing signs of softness, declining 0.7% in the 2nd quarter.

Cable modem is used by 41% of fixed broadband customers, attracting 25% of new subscriptions to the service over the quarter.

The "other" category, which includes offers based on leased lines and FWA, represents only 1% of total customers, declining by 2.7% over the previous quarter.

With regard to fixed broadband customers, Grupo PT's share of customers was reported at 47.8%, 0.6 percentage points more than in the previous quarter.

Grupo ZON's share of customers rose to 33.2%, an increase of 0.1 percentage points over the previous quarter and 0.6 percentage points over 2nd quarter 2010.

In terms of mobile broadband access via cards/modem, TMN's share of customers was reported at 43.4%, down from the 45% recorded in the previous quarter; TMN is followed by Optimus with 29.7 %, 0.6 points more than in the previous quarter, and Vodafone with 23%, compared to 22.3% in the previous quarter.

The number of cards actually used for Internet access fell for the third consecutive quarter.

It is to be noted that the evolution reported in the shares of customers has been strongly influenced by the e-iniciativas programme; as such the shares reported for each provider may partly reflect the different commitments that each operator has taken on for the purpose of promoting the information society under the tender for the allocation of UMTS licenses.

Broadband Internet access traffic grew by 1.6% in the second quarter. The reported evolution is explained in the most part by the evolution in fixed broadband traffic (1.8%) which represents approximately 95.6% of total traffic. Meanwhile, mobile broadband traffic fell by 2.8%, with traffic generated by mobile users with connections through cards/modem representing approximately 96.8% of all mobile broadband Internet access traffic.

In the period being reported, separable revenues from the fixed Internet access service (accumulated) totalled about 177 million euros, 11.3% less than in the same period of 2010. These revenues are derived from stand-alone or multiple-play bundles where the Internet component is separable

Non-separable revenues from bundles which include the Internet access service amounted to around 157 million euros in the first half of 2011.

Meanwhile, revenues from the mobile internet access service totalled 172 million euros, declining 11.5 percent over the same period of 2010.

Consult the statistical report:

Internet Access Service - 2nd quarter 2011 http://www.anacom.pt/render.jsp?contentId=1098636

Glossary
ADSL - Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line: The most common asymmetrical transmission technology in the xDSL family. An ADSL connection offers a high bitrate downstream channel (1.5 to 9 Mbits/s) and a lower bitrate upstream channel (16 to 640Kbits/s), in addition to normal telephony service in the low frequency range.
Broadband: Used to describe services or connections which allow the high speed movement of considerable quantities of information, with upstream speeds in excess of 128 kbps.
FWA - Fixed Wireless Access: Technology which allows operators to supply customers with a direct connection to their telecommunications network through a fixed wireless connection at their premises to the operator's local exchange, instead of a connection with copper cables or fibre optic.
Optical Cable: Cable containing optical fibre.
UMTS - Universal Mobile Telecommunications System: One of the 3G mobile communications systems which will be used, particularly in Europe, and which is integrated in a much larger family (IMT-2000).
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