Structure of Mobile Telecommunications Markets


Authored by: Peter Curwen , Jason Whalley

The Routledge Companion to Mobile Media

Print publication date:  April  2014
Online publication date:  May  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415809474
eBook ISBN: 9780203434833
Adobe ISBN: 9781135949181


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This chapter contains an analysis of the structure of mobile telecommunications markets exclusively from the point of view of network operators. 1 It builds upon a series of previous papers which have taken a somewhat broader view of structural issues, 2 but is notable for providing a database as of December 31, 2011. This database is at the heart of the analysis presented in this chapter. After highlighting the continued importance of operators in today’s mobile industry and commenting on the approach adopted, the chapter explores a number of structural issues. The number of mobile operators in each market varies around the world. Three or four mobile operators can be found in a great many European markets, while proposed consolidation in the United States is likely to result in two national operators being substantially larger than their two rivals. A duopoly can be found in many Latin American markets whereas in many Asian countries there are five or more operators—as is also the case in much of Africa—although developments in Europe and the Americas suggest that the number of operators will fall in the future.

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