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Bahrain-Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband-Statistics and Analyses

Bahrain-Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband-Statistics and Analyses

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Executive Summary

Bahrain's regulatory authority implements measures to improve services

There are a number of developments underway in Bahrain which will improve both services and infrastructure going forward. Bahrain already has a progressive telecoms market which is liberalised to a large extent and one of the most open in the region, underpinned by a relatively well-developed regulatory structure. The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) is the primary driver behind many of the key planned improvements to the current telecoms market in Bahrain.

Bahrain's Third National Telecommunication Plan expired at the end of 2015 and the Fourth National Telecommunications Plan was given approval by the Ministry in May 2016. It will reportedly focus on further developing fibre-optic infrastructure and implementing affordable prices for high-speed access. It also includes consideration of 5G development and readiness. This blueprint for the future will see Bahrain have full fibre optic coverage in three years, according to the TRA's Director-General.

The TRA has been making concerted efforts to improve telecommunication services and over the past year or so has conducted surveys in order to gauge citizen's feedback and subsequently implement measures to make targeted improvements. The area of billing has been of particular focus with the TRA attempting to reduce bill shock in the area of international roaming.

Mobile operators in Bahrain are under pressure amidst falling mobile APRUs which in 2016, are now around half the amount they were in 2008. However revenues from mobile broadband are continuously rising and now contribute over 35% to total broadband revenues in Bahrain compared to only 7% in 2010. In addition mobile broadband usage is growing representing over 50% of total broadband usage today.

The amount of revenue generated by residential users of broadband is significantly higher than that from businesses indicating there are potential growth opportunities in the broadband enterprise sector for both wired and wireless services in Bahrain.

Going forward Bahrain is well positioned and supported by government to make the necessary changes and appropriate measures to ensure it remains one of the most progressive telecoms markets in the Middle East. The operators are now beginning to turn their attention towards Internet of Everything (IoT) initiatives including M2M service offerings.

Key telecom parameters 2013; 2016

Sector | 2013 | 2016

Subscribers to telecoms services (million): (e)

Broadband users | 1.63 | 2.35

Fixed-line telephony | 0.25 | 0.23

Mobile phone | 2.21 | 2.53

(Source: BuddeComm based on industry data)

Key developments:

The results of a strategic review of Bahrain's telecoms market were released in 2015 and identified a number of projects and activities to be concluded over the following 18 months.

The Fourth National Telecommunications Plan was approved in May 2016.

At the end of 2015, Bahrain Telecommunications Company (Batelco) announced a 4% loss in gross revenues compared to 2014. This was due to the increased competition in the market which resulted in decline in subscriber numbers.

While the number of post-paid subscribers in Bahrain is lower than pre-paid this market segment actually contributes around 52% to overall retail mobile market revenues.

In mid 2015 the Global IP Exchange (GIPX) interoperability hub developed by BT and VIVA was launched.

Companies covered in this report include:

Batelco, MenaTelecom, Kalaam Telecom, 2Connect, Noorsat, Zain Bahrain, Viva Bahrain.

1. Executive summary

2. Key statistics

2.1 Country overview

3. Telecommunications market

3.1 Historical overview

3.2 Market analysis

3.3 Recent developments

4. Regulatory environment

4.1 Regulatory authority

4.2 Overview

4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Bahrain

4.3.1 First National Telecommunications Plan

4.3.2 Second National Telecommunications Plan and planned measures

4.3.3 Third National Telecommunications Plan

4.3.4 Fourth National Telecommunications Plan

4.3.5 Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) licences

4.4 Interconnect

4.5 Access

4.6 Number portability

4.7 Privatisation

5. Fixed network operators in Bahrain

5.1 Overview

5.2 Bahrain telecommunications company (Batelco)

5.2.1 Historical overview

5.2.2 Recent developments

5.3 Alternative operators

5.3.1 MenaTelecom

5.3.2 Kalaam Telecom

5.3.3 2Connect (revoked)

6. Telecommunications infrastructure

6.1 National telecom network

6.2 International infrastructure

6.2.1 Submarine cable networks

6.2.2 Satellite networks

6.2.3 Noorsat

7. Smart infrastructure

7.1 M2M/IoT/Big Data

7.2 Smart energy

8. Wholesaling

8.1 Overview

9. Broadband access market

9.1 Market analysis

9.2 Broadband statistics

9.3 Broadband subscriber forecasts

9.3.1 Scenario 1 higher growth

9.3.2 Scenario 2 lower growth

9.4 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) and Fibre-To-The-Home (FttH)

9.4.1 National Broadband Network (NBN)

9.5 Other fixed broadband services

9.5.1 Fixed wireless (WiFi and WiMAX)

9.5.2 iBurst

10. Digital economy

10.1 Introduction

10.2 e-Commerce

10.2.1 Sharing economy

10.3 e-Banking

10.4 e-Government

10.5 e-Health

10.6 e-Education

11. Digital media

11.1 Introduction

11.2 Videostreaming

11.2.1 Introduction

11.2.2 Video-based services

11.2.3 Broadband TV (IPTV)

11.3 Social media

11.4 VoIP

11.5 Music

11.6 On line gaming and gambling

12. Mobile communications

12.1 Market analysis

12.2 Mobile statistics

12.2.1 General statistics

12.3 Mobile voice

12.3.1 Prepaid

12.3.2 Mobile data

12.4 Mobile broadband statistics

12.5 Regulatory issues

12.5.1 Second mobile licence

12.5.2 Third mobile licence

12.5.3 Prepaid subscriber registration

12.5.4 Roaming tariff reduction

12.5.5 MNP

12.6 Mobile infrastructure

12.6.1 Brief intro analogue networks

12.6.2 Digital networks

12.7 Major mobile operators

12.7.1 Batelco

12.7.2 Zain Bahrain

12.7.3 Viva Bahrain / STC Bahrain

12.8 Mobile content and applications

12.8.1 m-commerce

12.8.2 m-banking (payments/loans)

12.8.3 m-TV

12.9 Mobile handsets

13. Related reports

Exhibit 1 Bahrain National fixed voice services operators

Table 1 Country statistics Bahrain-2016

Table 2 Telecom revenue statistic 2014

Table 3 Telephone network statistics 2016

Table 4 Broadband statistics 2016

Table 5 Mobile statistics 2016

Table 6 National telecommunications authorities

Table 7 GDP growth and inflation 2005-2016

Table 8 Telecom sector revenue 2006-2014

Table 9 Telecom sector revenue breakdown 2012-2014

Table 10 Batelco revenue and profit Bahrain and other-2005 2015

Table 11 Batelco revenue by division-2005 2015

Table 13 Historic-Fixed lines in service and teledensity-1995 2004

Table 14 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2005 2016

Table 15 ARPU for National calls 2010-2014

Table 16 Historic-Internet users and penetration estimates-1995-2004

Table 17 Internet users and penetration estimates-2005-2016

Table 18 Fixed and mobile broadband subscribers-2012-2016

Table 19 Broadband sector revenue 2010-2014

Table 20 Forecast broadband subscribers higher market growth scenario 2018; 2024

Table 21 Forecast broadband subscribers lower market growth scenario 2018; 2024

Table 22 Bahrain IPTV subscribers Q1 2013; Q1 2014; Q1 2015

Table 23-Facebook Stats for Bahrain compared to other Middle Eastern countries-as at July 2015

Table 24 Historic-Mobile subscribers and penetration rate-1995-2004

Table 25 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate-2005-2016

Table 26 Mobile market revenue 2007-2014

Table 27 Mobile monthly ARPU 2008-2014

Table 28 Bahrain total prepaid mobile subscribers-1999 Q1 2015

Table 29 Zain Bahrain prepaid subscribers-2004-2014

Table 30 SMS message sent 2008-2013

Table 31 Mobile broadband subscribers 2012-2016

Table 32 Accepted cumulative mobile number portability requests 2011-2015

Table 12 Batelco total group mobile subscribers 2005-2015

Table 34 Zain Bahrain revenue, EBITDA, CAPEX and ARPU-2005 2015

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Batelco, MenaTelecom, Kalaam Telecom, 2Connect, Noorsat, Zain Bahrain, Viva Bahrain.

paul budde communication, buddecomm, telecomunications research, country profile, Broadband Fixed, Broadcasting, Companies (Major Players), Digital Economy, Digital Media, Internet, Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media, Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure), Regulations & Government Policies, Strategies & Analyses (Industry & Markets), Telecoms Infrastructure, Bahrain, The Middle East

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