Venezuelan triple-play cable operator Inter will focus on improving its service offerings this year, whilst putting further geographical expansion on hold amidst unfavourable local market conditions, the company told BNamericas. Inter already has a considerable coverage advantage over many of its rivals with a presence in at least 80 cities and towns, and its cable network is 100% digitised. Number one priority in 2010 is to increase its existing high definition (HD) TV coverage beyond its existing approximate footprint of 50% of customers, whilst Inter is also preparing to upgrade its broadband internet speeds with DOCSIS 3.0 and GPON technologies, but is waiting for the trade and industry ministry MinComercio to authorise importation of the necessary hardware. According to Venezuela’s pay-TV providers’ chamber Cavetesu, Inter currently has around 625,000 pay-TV subscriptions, or a 26% share of the country’s 2.4 million total, second to DirecTV, which has one million. Inter chairman Eduardo Stigol has previously said he believes the company has a 70% pay-TV market share outside Caracas. However, in 2009 the country’s pay-TV sector’s growth rate fell to 19% from 22% in previous years, and Inter expects even slower growth this year, prompting caution in further network expansion plans. The operator currently has around 200,000 cable broadband subscribers (95% residential), and also claims to serve 75,000 telephony customers.