Industry Trends & Developments
Registration F or 800MHz Auction Opens
In November 2012 FICORA opened the registration process for the 800MHz spectrum auction, which will begin in late January 2013. Registrations were open until December 17 2012. The regulator is set to auction a total of 2x30MHz of spectrum, which will be sold in 2x5MHz frequency pairs. A single operator or organisation can acquire a maximum of three pairs of spectrum, with licences lasting 20 years.
Threat Of OTT
Although SMS use in Finland remains robust, with FICORA data showing that SMS per subscription increased 23.7% y-o-y to H112, BMI believes the threat of SMS IP substitution through OTT services such as Viber and WhatsApp is increasing. This view is based on data from around Europe showing operators are set to come under pressure from SMS IP erosion whereby consumers utilise the proliferation of smartphones to shift to OTT messaging services such as WhatsApp and Viber.
DNA Launches WiFi Offer
In September 2012, DNA exclusively launched the Goodspeed service, a personal Wi-Fi mobile hotspot that allows the use of locally priced data transfer anywhere in Europe. Developed by Uros, the Goodspeed device holds up to 10 SIM cards and users can connect up to five devices simultaneously. The device can be bought from DNA stores or online from Amazon for EUR269 and a monthly access fee of EUR9.90.
Mobile Data Continues To Rise
In June 2012, FICORA revealed that nearly 3.6mn mobile subscriptions had a monthly data transfer plan at the end of 2011, representing 18% of the total mobile subscriber base. In addition, 1.1mn mobile subscriptions had data transfer plans that had no monthly limits. In all, data transfer services were used by 52% of mobile subscriptions in 2011.