High-speed networks and services at a fixed location - 1st half of 2023



Executive Summary

86.4% of Portuguese households subscribe to high-speed services at a fixed location

At the end of the first half of 2023 (1H2023), the number of residential customers with high-speed services at a fixed location reached 3.6 million, 5.2% more than in the previous year (+7.1% in 1H2022). The take-up rate among households was 86.4%1.

Around nine out of every ten new high-speed network customers contracted a service supported over optical fibre networks (FTTH).

The regions of Lisbon (98.5%), Azores (96.4%), Madeira (93.9%) and Algarve (92.7%) had higher than average rates of penetration. There was a notable increase in the penetration rate in the Algarve, rising from 84.1% (1H2022) to 92.7% at the end of 1H2023.

89.7% of accesses with download speeds ≥100 Mbps

At the end of 1H2023, 89.7% of fixed broadband accesses were classed as ultrafast broadband accesses (i.e. download speed2 greater than or equal to 100 Mbps), 2.3 percentage points more than in the same period of 2022. Broadband accesses with download speeds between 100 Mbps and 400 Mbps represented 44.1% (-7.1 percentage points versus 1H2022), 36.5% had speeds between 400 Mbps and 1Gbps (+5.5 percentage points) and 9.1% accesses had speeds equal to or greater than 1 Gbps (+3.9 percentage points).

Portugal reports among best results in EU27

According to the European Commission, in July 2022, the proportion of accesses with download speeds equal to or greater than 100 Mbps in Portugal (87.4%) was the fourth highest in the EU27.

High-speed networks with 94% coverage, in a context of inter-regional convergence

It is estimated that, at least, around 6.1 million dwellings were connected to a high-speed network, 1.2% more than in 1H2022. The growth observed was lower than that recorded a year ago (3.2% year-on-year). Coverage of high-speed networks was 94.2% (+1.1 percentage points versus 1H2022.

By region, coverage in the metropolitan area of Madeira, Lisbon and the Azores was above average. On the other hand, there was notable growth in the number of connected dwellings in the Centre Region (+3.2%) and in the Algarve (+2.5%), bringing these regions closer into line with the national average and strengthening territorial cohesion.

It is estimated that around 69.6% of connected dwellings and establishments made actual use of services provided to residential and non-residential customers.

Dwellings connected to optical fibre increased by 1.6% in the last twelve months

By technology, the number of dwellings connected to optical fibre (FTTH – Fibre to the Home) reached around 6.0 million, 1.6% more than in the same period of 2022 (following an increase of 3.9% in 1H2022), achieving coverage of 92.3%.

The proportion of dwellings and establishments connected with FTTH and with actual use was 49.7% at the end of 1H2023. The Azores, North, Lisbon and Alentejo regions had FTTH take-up rates that were higher than the national average. Only in Madeira was this rate lower than 40%. As a result, inter-regional asymmetries have been dissipating.

The number of dwellings connected to high-speed access supported by cable TV networks (HFC - Hybrid Fibre Coaxial) remained in line with 1H2022, totalling 3.7 million. Coverage by this type of network was 57.8% in 1H2023.

Notes
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1 In this report, ''household'' corresponds to the ''private domestic households'' indicator from the definitive data reported in the 2021 Census.
2 Maximum speeds advertised by operators and communicated to consumers.