Fixed Telephone Service - 1st quarter 2023

Executive Summary

96.8% of households with a fixed telephone

In the 1st quarter of 2023 (1Q2023), the penetration rate of main telephone accesses was 52.4 accesses per 100 inhabitants. The penetration rate of accesses installed on demand from residential customers reached 96.8 per 100 households, up 2.2 percentage points (p.p.) from the same quarter last year.

Number of customers increased by 1.9%

In 1Q2023, the number of direct access fixed telephone service customers was approximately 4.4 million, 81 thousand (+1.9%) more than in the 1st quarter of 2022 (1Q2022). The growth recorded is consistent with the estimated historical trend and is associated with the continued penetration of bundled offers that include the fixed telephone service.

Next generation networks responsible for the growth in the number of accesses

The pool of main telephone accesses reached 5.5 million equivalent accesses, 109 thousand more than in the same quarter last year. The growth (+2.0%) was due to the increase in accesses supported on fibre optic and cable TV networks (+266 thousand accesses).

In 1Q2023, accesses supported on next generation networks (FTTH, cable TV networks and mobile networks at fixed locations), accounted for 90.5% of total accesses, and increased their weight by 2.6 p.p. compared to the same quarter last year. On the other hand, the number of analogue accesses fell by 25.4% y.o.y, to represent only 5.9% of total accesses.

Public payphones down by 10.4%

The number of installed public payphones was around 12.2 thousand, a fall by 10.4% compared to 1Q2022.

Traffic in minutes originating from public payphones, which decreased by 10.6% in Q1 2023, shows a downward trend justified by the replacement of this type of traffic by mobile phone calls and other forms of internet-based communications. This type of traffic has decreased by 77.5% since Q2 2016.

Traffic originating from the fixed network decreased by 17.7%

In the period under review, the volume of minutes originated in the fixed network decreased by 17.7% compared to the same quarter last year.

The COVID-19 pandemic no longer had a significant impact on the average traffic per FTS access, which returned to the downward trend observed before the pandemic and to the levels estimated in the absence of the pandemic.

According to the type of call, the decrease was mainly due to the drop in fixed-to-fixed traffic (-19.1%) and, to a lesser extent, to the reduction in fixed-to-mobile traffic (-5.8%), in national traffic to short numbers and non-geographic numbers (-38.2%) and in outgoing international traffic (-24.6%).

Monthly traffic per access fell by 11 minutes

In 1Q2023, an average of 45 minutes per access per month was used, of which 29 minutes were for fixed-to-fixed calls, 9 minutes for fixed-to-mobile calls and 2 minutes for international calls. Compared to 1Q2022, 11 minutes less per access per month were consumed (-19.5%).

Provider shares

In 1Q2023, MEO’s share of direct access customers reached 41.8%, followed by NOS Group with 34.3%, Vodafone with 20.6% and NOWO with 2.6%. The share of direct access customers of NOS Group and NOWO decreased by 0.3 p.p. and 0.2 p.p. respectively. On the other hand, Vodafone’s share increased by 0.4 p.p. and MEO’s by 0.1 p.p. The level of concentration increased slightly.