Broadband providers see growth across the globe amid pandemic

Streaming companies are not the only ones which have benefited during the coronavirus pandemic, with new figures indicating that ISPs around the globe have also seen a boost.

According to Ampere Analysis’s Broadband market bellwether, 70% of companies in the market have reported growth during the health crisis, with positive net additions of more than 8 million subscribers. This is gauged from the results of more than 110 companies which account for roughly 70% of the world’s 1.05 billion fixed-line broadband subscribers.

The remaining 30% saw their subscriber bases contract by more than 1.6 million customers.

Across those companies, all regions saw a 1% increase of fixed broadband subscribers in Q1, Central and Eastern Europe seeing the largest growth. Primary drivers in these regions were Turkey, Russia, Poland and Romania.

Brazil’s Oi – reportedly an acquisition target for Telecom Italia and Telefonica – was the worst performing operator in the world, losing almost 4% of its 5 million subscriber base. Brazil has been one of the worst-hit countries by the pandemic, with the economic crisis it has inspired being exasperated by the widespread income inequality across the nation.

The report adds that Orange and Movistar in Spain, and the Dutch KPN also ranked in the top five worst-performers for the quarter.

Smaller operators were the best-performing, with Spain’s Masmovil topping the list, with its subscriber base increasing by almost 8% in Q1. Vodafone’s Turkish business was the second-best performing with growth of more than 5%. The other operators in the top 5 are from China and Thailand, indicating the ongoing growth in the Asia Pacific region.

Hazel Ford, Analyst at Ampere, said: “The ongoing pandemic has seen more people working from home and means connectivity is more important than ever. While lockdown measures didn’t start in many nations until towards the end of the quarter, the Q1 figures will nonetheless reflect the early impact of the pandemic on consumer behaviours.”

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