Nepal mobile users total 19.4m in September, fixed and internet subs base up too

25 Nov 2013

Industry watchdog the Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) has published its latest Management Information System (MIS) report on the domestic market for the period 15 August 2013 – 16 September 2013, showing that there were a total of 19.403 million mobile users in the country at that date, up from 18.557 million three months earlier and 17.395 million at mid-March, a cellular penetration of 73.23%. Of the total, some 10.759 million were signed up with GSM market leader Spice Nepal Private (Ncell), up from 10.346 million in mid-June, while state owned incumbent Nepal Telecom (NT) had 7.670 million GSM and 973,392 CDMA-based customers, compared to 7.380 million and 829,447 three months before.

In the fixed line market, NTA reported a total of 847,008 PSTN and wireless in the local loop (WiLL) subscribers at mid-September, up from 835,437 at mid-June, a fixed teledensity of 3.19% (3.15%), of which NT claimed 765,394 (642,353 PSTN and 123,041 WiLL), United Telecom Limited (UTL) had 72,836 (WiLL), Nepal Satellite Telecom had 2,950 (WiLL), CG Communications (formerly STM Telecom Sanchar) had 5,230 (PSTN) and Smart Telecom claimed 598 (PSTN). There were also a total of 1.607 million Limited Mobility Services (LMS) subscribers at the same date, the NTA said, mainly attributable to UTL (654,617) and Smart (806,106).

Turning to the country’s burgeoning data and internet services market, the regulator reported a total of 7.201 million subscriptions at mid-September 2013, up from 6.841 million at mid-June, including 116,990 ADSL lines (all NT), 3,689 WiMAX connections (NT), 17,815 cable broadband (all internet service providers [ISPs]) and 61,207 fibre-optic and wireless broadband (ISPs). Finally, 6.762 million users are hooked up via mobile internet connections based on GPRS/EDGE/W-CDMA technology (3.220 million for NT and 3.531 million, Ncell) and 234,724 through CDMA2000 1xEV-DO.