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GSM Continues Rapid Upward Growth in the Americas
Posted: 07-Apr-2003 [Source: 3G Americas]

[GSM increases Latin American subscriber base by 90% in 2002.]

Bellevue, WA -- GSM increased its digital cellular subscriber base in the Americas by 54% in 2002, the largest percentage gain of any wireless technology in the region. In Latin America, GSM increased its subscriber base by 90% in 2002, largely in the second half of the year when several new GSM networks were commercially launched. Globally, GSM added over 165 million new customers in 2002 - adding more new customers than the total subscriber base of any other mobile wireless technology in the world.

Chris Pearson, Executive Vice President of 3G Americas stated, "The tremendous growth in GSM throughout the Americas could be attributed to the current and planned migration by 24 TDMA operators in the region to GSM. In addition, there were ten new GSM network deployments in the Americas since June 2002. Operators continue to choose the GSM migration path based on its technical merits, economies of scale, roaming, and business case advantages over other competing technologies."

Pearson added, "Due to the migration trend of TDMA operators, we expect GSM to become the leading wireless technology in the Americas by 2007. "

"Investors in wireless networks in Latin America and the Caribbean continue to make GSM the technology of choice," remarked Dr. Richard Downes, Director of Latin America and the Caribbean for 3G Americas. "GSM has arrived - or will soon arrive - in every country in the region. From January 2000 to December 2002, 24 out of 27 newly licensed operators have selected GSM." Downes added, "This adoption rate is moving the dream of an interoperable pan-regional GSM network ever closer to reality."

Based on recent subscriber data reported by EMC, GSM has 8.5 million subscribers in Latin America, a 90% growth rate in just one year, and 17.6 million subscribers in the United States and Canada, a 41% growth rate in 2002.

On a global basis, GSM/GPRS data services are commercially available from 147 operators in 58 countries according to EMC, and subscribers to GPRS grew by 47% in the fourth quarter of 2002. The GSM family of wireless service platforms - GSM, GPRS, EDGE, and WCDMA - represents about 72% of the world's digital wireless customers today. There are 825 million GSM customers globally on 640 networks (469 operators) in 175 countries, making GSM the technology of choice for the wor

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