Last week Chile’s incumbent operator Entel announced its first successful LTE trial, leading the way toward mobile broadband in the region. Chile is undoubtedly Latin America’s test bed for new telecoms technologies, having been the first country in the region to launch mobile WiMAX, IPTV, EDGE, and the second to launch 3G (after Puerto Rico).
This LTE annoucement is an indicator that mobile broadband is the most exciting new service to be launched in Latin America. Indeed, after years of slower growth followed by a recession that hit the region strongly, operators are in need of new models to reinforce their positions. One way is of course to reduce costs – and as elsewhere operators are looking into cost-efficiency strategies. But they will also need to reduce to trend towards lower ARPUs by launching more revenue-generating data services. That’s where mobile broadband brings the best opportunities. The fixed market occupies a relatively small position in most Latin America’s markets compared to mobile, and mobile broadband is an ideal way of reaching new internet users.
It is therefore fitting that the upcoming Americas Com event (Rio, Brazil, 30 June – 1st July) will give prominent position on its programme to broadband strategies, with a full keynote session dedicated to it, as well as a special focus session on Chile as the most innovating market in the region. The conference programme is being written and there are speaking opportunities for operators and telecoms specialists to share their expertise on the market. Don't hesitate to get in touch for more information.