A general development trend in Finnish telecommunications in recent years has been the increased use of mobile and broadband services and the simultaneous decrease in the use of fixed telephone network services. This development continued strongly in 2007.
The total number of fixed telephone network subscriptions, which includes conventional telephone subscriptions and ISDN subscriber lines converted to channels, decreased in 2007, like it has done in recent years. At the end of the year, fixed telephone network subscriptions totalled a good 1.7 million, equalling around 33 subscriptions per 100 population. Their number fell by 9 per cent compared to the situation at the end of 2006.
At the end of 2007 private households used 60 per cent of all fixed telephone subscriber lines (excl. public phones) and the remaining 40 per cent were used by others, such as businesses and the public sector.
The number of ISDN subscriber lines continued to fall in 2007; the number of basic rate subscriber lines fell by 5 per cent and that of primary rate subscriber lines by 7 per cent. Some 10 per cent of the basic rate ISDN subscriber lines were in household use.
In recent years telecommunications operators have given up their public phones. At the end of 2007 their number stood at only some 100.
At the end of 2007, there were altogether a good 1.7 million broadband subscriptions in Finland. The number of subscriptions was 21 per cent higher than at the end of 2006.
The majority of broadband subscriptions were DSL subscriptions, which include the xDSL connections supplied by telecommunications operators to individual end users (slightly under 1.3 million) and housing corporations (some 2,000) as well as shared connections to real estate which the telecommunications operators divide to end users (some 91,000). These data do not include xDSL subscriptions of housing corporations broken down to the end user level.
Slightly under 80 per cent of all broadband subscriptions were in the use of households; e.g. some 78 per cent of DSL subscriptions to end users and to real estate as well as slightly over 80 per cent of the WLAN and WiMAX subscriptions were in private household use. Nearly all cable modems and approximately one-half of mobile broadband subscriptions were in private household use.
The transmission speed of 31 per cent of all broadband subscriptions was 2 Mbps or higher; 28 per cent had a transmission speed of at least 2 Mbps but under 10 Mbps, and three per cent of the subscriptions had a transmission speed of at least 10 Mbps. In 2007 the most common transmission speed was 1 Mbps.
Compared with the annual growth in the number of broadband subscriptions, the number of dial-up subscriptions has fallen steadily. At the end of 2007, only some 53,000 telecommunications operators’ dial-up subscriptions were reported. Their number fell by 39 per cent in the year, as at the end of 2006 such subscriptions numbered some 87,000.
Despite the high diffusion of mobile phone subscriptions, the number of mobile communication network subscriptions continued to grow in 2007. This resulted partly from the diffusion of mobile broadband subscriptions which use the digital mobile communication network. At the end of 2007, subscriptions totalled nearly 6.1 million, equalling around 115 subscriptions per 100 population.
Pre-paid subscriptions accounted for nine per cent of all mobile phone subscriptions. Around 23 per cent of all mobile communication network subscriptions were in business use.
Similarly to the number of fixed telephone network subscriptions, also the volume of outgoing telecommunications from such networks has fallen in recent years. In 2007, the number of outgoing calls from local telephone networks totalled slightly over one billion, which was just under one-fifth less than in 2006. The number of call minutes from local telephone networks was slightly over 4 billion. The number of call minutes was down by one-fourth from the year before, when their number totalled nearly 5.4 billion. Approximately 36 per cent of the outgoing calls were made from household subscriber lines, which accounted for 58 per cent of all call minutes. Dial-up calls accounted for some 9 per cent of all call minutes in 2007.
The transition from using fixed telephone network services into using those of the digital mobile communications network is also reflected in the distribution of outgoing calls from the local telephone networks. This development has affected local calls the most; both their volume and their proportion of outgoing calls from the fixed telephone network have fallen relatively the most during recent years. In 2003, for example, the share of local calls of all outgoing calls from local telephone networks was nearly one-half, whereas in 2007 that same proportion was down to one-third. Correspondingly, the proportion of local calls of total call minutes was 66 per cent in 2003 and 46 per cent in 2007. By contrast, even though the volume of calls to the digital mobile communications network is also falling, their relative proportion of the outbound calls from local telephone networks has been growing each year.
In 2007 the volume of outgoing calls from mobile phones was 4.6 times and the number of call minutes 3.4 times higher than the outgoing calls and minutes from the local telephone network (fixed). (As regards the total numbers of calls and call minutes, it should be noted that these statistics do not cover calls transmitted in IP networks and, consequently, not the total number of calls and call minutes made from all networks.)
Outgoing calls from mobile phones totalled nearly 4.8 billion in 2007, which was 7 per cent more than in 2006. Call minutes from mobile phones totalled 13.5 billion in the year, which was 6 per cent more than in the year before. Of all calls and all call minutes, 72 per cent were made from private subscriptions.
Of the calls and call minutes from mobile phones, approximately 85 per cent were to domestic mobile subscriber numbers, 14 per cent or so to domestic fixed line subscriber numbers and roughly one per cent to international subscriber numbers, either fixed of mobile.
Similarly to the number of outgoing calls and call minutes from mobile phones in the year, the numbers of text and multimedia messages have grown each year. This development continued in 2007, when almost 3.2 billion text messages were sent. This was three per cent up from the year before. Text messages numbered, on average, 524 per subscription. In 2007 the number of multimedia messages sent was nearly 29 million, which was one-third more than in 2006.
In mobile communications the total volume of packaged data transmission grew five-fold from 2006 and reached some 500,000 gigabytes in 2007. Private subscriptions’ proportion of this volume was roughly three-fourths.
In recent years the number of personnel at telecommunications operators has declined each year. In 2007 the number of personnel at telecommunications operators was some 13,400. The number of personnel fell by 8 per cent from the previous year.
The total turnover of telecommunications operators in 2007 remained roughly on level with that in 2006. Turnover amounted to nearly EUR 4.5 billion, which is roughly one per cent less than in the year before. Overall, the turnover of the phone call activity in the fixed local communications network as well as data transmission grew from the year before, whereas the turnover of mobile communications remained on level with the previous year, even though the included turnover from other services than phone call services grew significantly. Turnover from long-distance and international telecommunications in the fixed communications network as well as activities recorded as other activity contracted from the year before.
In 2007, like in recent years, mobile telecommunications accounted for around one-half of the total turnover of telecommunications operators. The majority of this continued to come from voice services, for non-voice services only generated 16 per cent of the turnover from mobile communications (i.e. 8 per cent of the total turnover). The proportion of telephone communications in the fixed communications network of the total turnover was just under 14 per cent. The proportion of data transmission was 18 per cent, of which 39 per cent consisted of turnover from Consumer Internet (the proportion of Consumer Internet of the total turnover was 7 per cent). Just under one-fifth, or 18 per cent, of the total turnover of telecommunications operators was generated in other activity not specified above. Equipment sales made up 38 per cent of that.
Telecommunications operators’ investments in tangible assets in 2007 remained roughly on level with those in 2006. Investments totalled EUR 436 million, which was just under 2 per cent less than in the year before. The proportion of investments in telecommunication networks of all tangible investments was the same as in 2006, namely 86 per cent. Telecommunication operators’ investments in networks totalled EUR 376 million in 2007.
In 2006 the branch of manufacturing producing telecommunications equipment employed slightly fewer persons than the year before. The total number of personnel in the branch was 30,300, which is a good one per cent down on 2005. By contrast, the value of gross output of the branch grew in 2006 from the year before. The value of gross output totalled EUR 18.5 billion, which was 8 per cent up from that of the previous year.
In 2007, the value of telecommunications equipment imports grew by a total of 87 per cent from the year before. The value of imports was EUR 3.6 billion. The proportion of telecommunications equipment of total imports stood at 6 per cent. Similarly to imports, the value of telecommunications equipment exports also grew from 2006. The value of telecommunications equipment exports of was EUR 8.9 billion, which was 14 per cent of total exports.
Source: Telecommunications 2007, Statistics Finland
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Contents (Telecommunications 2007)