Brazil was home to a total of 258.86 million mobile SIMs at the end of September 2012, up a net 959,860 (0.37%) on the month of August, according to data published by the national telecoms regulator Anatel. The rise pushed cellular penetration to 131.56%, the watchdog said, adding that most connections (81.19%) were pre-paid users, while 18.81% were on monthly contracts. In terms of 3G mobile broadband devices (handsets, dongles etc), Anatel reported that Brazil had a total of 57.28 million connections at the end of the third quarter, representing 2% growth on the previous month. It is estimated that in the first six months of this year a total of 6.8 million smartphones were sold in Brazil, up 77% year-on-year.
Vivo Participacoes continued to lead the pack at end-September with 76.80 million mobile users, a market share of 29.67%, ahead of TIM Brasil with 69.41 million (26.81%), Telecoms Americas’ Claro with 63.45 million (24.51%), Oi SA with 48.38 million (18.69%) and minor players CTBC (Algar) and Sercomtel Celular, with 0.29% and 0.03% respectively.