Retailer expects half of phones sold in 2007 to be 3G

6 Sep 2006

Israeli mobile retailer Eurocom Cellular Communications says it sold 100,000 Nokia W-CDMA handsets in the past four months and predicts that half of all the phones sold in 2007 will be 3G models. With the Israel market reaching saturation, the country’s three major mobile operators Cellcom, Partner and Pelephone have all turned their attention to boosting revenues by signing up users to value added services and next generation networks. All three hold UMTS spectrum and Cellcom was the first to market, rolling out its W-CDMA network on a limited basis in Sharon in August 2004. Partner rolled out its W-CDMA network a few months later, and has since invested substantially in expanding the breadth and depth of the service, including HSDPA, establishing itself as the leading 3G provider in terms of subscribers. Pelephone has yet to utilise its UMTS spectrum, instead focusing its investments on the upgrade of its CDMA2000 1x 800MHz network with EV-DO technology, which it launched in September 2004. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, there were 385,000 3G subscribers in Israel at the end of June 2006, of which 170,000 were W-CDMA uers and 115,000 EV-DO.