Iran - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
Iran was one of the first countries in the world to experience a serious outbreak of the Covid-19 virus outbreak, with over 50,000 cases and more than 3,000 deaths by early April 2020. In response to an increased demand for Internet access from citizens based at home, the three mobile operators, Hamrah-e Aval (MCI), MTN Irancell and Rightel developed special service offerings.
Operators in Iran are focused on driving up mobile broadband adoption and growing this important revenue stream. The infrastructure is in place for this growth, with Iran increasing its deployment of networks based on 4G considerably in recent years. 4G LTE population coverage has reached around 90%.
Iran is also looking towards a future based on 5G. The government is proactively preparing regulations for 5G deployment and considering suitable bandwidth allocation. It aims to launch services in the next couple of years.
Iran is keen to grow its Iran’s digital economy and the National Internet Network (NIN) is pivotal to Iran’s fixed broadband infrastructure plans and overall Smart City progress.
Looking at Iran from a broad perspective; it appears to offer significant opportunities for telecoms growth. Its population is one of the largest in the Middle East, it has a youthful, tech savvy demographic and there is an unmet demand for both fixed and mobile telecoms services. With 4G networks in place - mobile broadband adoption should grow over the next few years, especially as current mobile broadband penetration levels indicate there is room for subscriber growth.
BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains all around the world. During this time, the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device and ICT equipment production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to source necessary equipment or manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may also be postponed or slowed down in some countries.
On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services is likely to be impacted by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. It is largely unknown what the long-term impacts will be as the crisis develops.
In addition, the report covers the responses of the telecom operators, as well as government agencies and regulators, as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.
This BuddeComm report explores Iran’s telecoms sector in further detail along with analyses of the market, key industry statistics, and information on the key developments and major players.
- The operators recently began offering national roaming which is improving services in rural areas.
- TCI allows infrastructure sharing of its fibre network with competitors.
- Smart phone penetration is relatively low in Iran compared to other markets.
- Iran is implementing its 6th Development Plan during 2016 – 2021.
- The broadband operator, Iranian-net, is deploying a national fibre network.
Telecommunication Company of Iran (TCI), Mobile Communications Iran (MCI), MTN Irancell, Tamin Telecom (Rightel).
2 REGIONAL MIDDLE EAST MARKET COMPARISON
2.2 Mobile and mobile broadband penetration
2.3 Fixed and mobile broadband penetration
3 COUNTRY OVERVIEW
4 COVID-19 AND ITS IMPACT ON THE TELECOMS SECTOR
4.1 Global implications
4.2 Economic considerations and responses
4.3 Developments in Iran
5 TELECOMMUNICATIONS MARKET
5.1 Market analysis
6 REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT
6.1 Historic overview
6.2 Sixth five year plan 2016 -2021
6.3 Regulatory authority
6.4 Mobile network developments
7 MOBILE COMMUNICATIONS
7.1 Market analysis
7.2 Mobile statistics
7.3 Mobile broadband statistics
7.4 Mobile infrastructure
7.5 Major mobile operators
7.6 Mobile content and applications
7.7 Mobile handsets
8 FIXED-LINE BROADBAND MARKET
8.1 Fixed broadband access market
9 FIXED NETWORK OPERATORS IN IRAN
9.1 Telecommunication Company of Iran (TCI)
9.2 Other licence holders/VoIP
10 TELECOMMUNICATIONS INFRASTRUCTURE
10.1 National telecom network
10.2 International infrastructure
11 SMART INFRASTRUCTURE
12 APPENDIX - HISTORIC DATA
13 RELATED REPORTS
Table 1 Country statistics and regulatory authorities - Iran 2020
Table 2 - Iran GDP and inflation 2012 2020
Table 3 Iran - mobile subscribers and penetration 2010 2020
Table 4 - Iran - mobile broadband subscriptions and penetration 2013 2020
Table 5 MCI mobile subscribers - 2019
Table 6 MTN Irancell Revenue and CAPEX 2018 2019
Table 7 MTN Irancell mobile subscribers and ARPU 2009 Q1 2019
Table 8 Iran - fixed broadband subscribers 2010 - 2020
Table 9 Iran - fixed lines in service and teledensity 2010 2020
Table 10 Iran - International Internet bandwidth 2009 2018
Table 11 Historic - Iran mobile subscribers and penetration - 1995 2009
Table 12 Historic - Iran - fixed lines in service and teledensity 1995 2009
Table 13 Historic - Iran - International Internet bandwidth 2002 2007
Chart 1 Middle East mobile subscriber and mobile broadband penetration
Chart 2 Middle East fixed and mobile broadband subscriber penetration
Exhibit 1 Privatisation of TCI
Looking at Iran from a broad perspective; it appears to offer significant opportunities for telecoms growth. Its population is one of the largest in the Middle East, it has a youthful population where the majority are under the age of 30 and there is an unmet demand for both fixed and mobile telecoms services.
A lack of significant investment in Iran’s fixed and mobile infrastructure over the last few years, when compared to other markets, has resulted in slow network speeds and low penetration rates for broadband. This is slowly changing in the wake of the lifting of economic sanctions - and a renewed interest in infrastructure investment is emerging.
Mobile penetration is considered high with a penetration of over 125%, with most citizens accessing 2G and 3G networks. 4G LTE services are becoming available and the large operators have experienced an increase in data revenues. There is much room for growth in this area with penetration levels at just over 50%.
Many unique challenges and opportunities exist in the telecoms Iranian market, which BuddeComm will explore in further detail throughout this report along with analyses of the market, key industry statistics, and information on the key developments and major players.