The growth rate of mobile telephony in Guatemala decreased from 2.5 million lines per year in 2005 to only about 460 thousand in 2010, a sign of market maturity. Today, Guatemala has 132 mobile phone lines per 100 inhabitants. In other words, there are more phones than the entire population.
The cake is big and tasty: Q12.4 billion, or $1.58 billion was transacted in 2011.
"Smartphones from Q1 ($ 0.13), messages and top ups for free, and numbers which can be called for free for life, are some of the weapons being used by telephone operators to attract new users," reports ElPeriodico.com.gt.
The dominant presence is Tigo, with 43% of users (about 7.97 million lines), secondly comes Claro with 34% (6.4 million lines), and thirdly, Telefonica Movistar, with 23% (4.17 million lines).
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From 3.1 million lines in 2004, mobile telephony in Guatemala has increased sevenfold, amounting to to 20.7 million lines at the end of 2011.
In the second half of 2011, more than two million new users were added to the market, making the number of users around the country at the end of December 2011 20.7 million, according to the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones (SIT).
During 2010 the cell phone market registered only a 4% growth, compared to 15% in 2009.
According to the Telecommunications Superintendence, there are currently over 18 million subscribers, 1.22 cell phones per person.
Tigo controls 42.7% of the cell phone market, followed by Claro with 34.1% and Telefonica with 23.1%.
The increase in the number of mobile phone line users during the first half of 2011 was almost half a million.
As of 30 June, the total number of lines stood at 18,528,667, an increase of 5.7% compared to the same period in 2010, according to preliminary information from the Superintendency of Telecommunications (SIT).
During 2012, mobile telephony saw a total of almost 21 million users, an increase of 6.7% compared to 2011.
According to statistics from the Superintendency of Telecommunications (SIT) in the past 9 years, mobile telephony has grown by 556%.
In 2003, Guatemala had more than three million subscribers, however, the figures indicate that as of 2009 the market stagnated and growth per year reduced to a million customers.