Market Overview

Research and Markets: Asia Mobile Operators


Research and Markets ( has announced the addition of the "Asia Mobile Operators" report to their offering.

Asia's highly competitive mobile market is built on a multitude of innovative operators. Across Asia a total of around three billion mobile subscribers are being served by a large number of mobile operators. The operators are continuing to drive the market, expanding it by more than 10% annually coming into 2012. This market report presents a wide-ranging review, providing details on around 175 of the mobile operators to be found in Asia in 2012.

The list of operators ranges from the giant China Mobile with almost 700 million subscribers right through to a number of much smaller operators with only a few thousand subscribers each. BuddeComm's overview of operators in the region does not claim to present an exhaustive list of licensed operators but it certainly is indicative of the breadth and variety of operator to be found in the region. It also reflects the highly commercial and competitive nature of the mobile sector in this region.

The focus of this report is on the operators within the individual national markets. Of course, in addition to these individual operators there are those companies such as SingTel, Vodafone, and Axiata (formerly Telekom Malaysia International) that have built a substantial presence around the region beyond their own domestic market through their shareholdings in operators in multiple other markets. This aspect of these corporations is not discussed in any detail but is mentioned in passing in the country by country review.

While the overall regional growth rate was slightly over 10% in 2011 highlights a selection of countries with growth rates well in excess of the regional average. Compared with a few years back, the market has moderated considerably; however, there was still one country with growth in excess of 100% - North Korea's subscriber base grew by 129% in 2011. The high growth rate markets are typically the smaller developing economies that are finally experiencing surges in subscriber numbers as they reach the turning point on the S-curve'. It is noted that India appears on the list. Although it is certainly experiencing a growth surge at this stage, it is its own special case being such a huge market (population 1.2 billion) with the growth being driven by a sophisticated telecom regulatory regime on the back of a strong economy.

With the progressive opening up of markets to more competition, we have seen the licensing of more and more operators across the region. One phenomenon in Asia has been the granting of a significant number of mobile operator licences in what have been regarded as smaller markets, ie with relatively low populations as well as low income per capita. We have seen this occur for example in Cambodia, Laos and Georgia. Over time, we can certainly expect some rationalisation of the operator numbers in such markets. In fact the process has already started in Cambodia.

Countries Covered:

Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Georgia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, North Korea, Pakistan, Philippines,

Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

For more information visit

Research and Markets
Laura Wood, Senior Manager.
U.S. Fax: 646-607-1907
Fax (outside U.S.): +353-1-481-1716
Sector: Telecommunications and Networks

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