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GSM Tops Americas Growth Charts in 2003
Posted: 09-Nov-2003 [Source: 3G Americas]

[GSM grows by 132% in Latin America and the Caribbean in a one-year period os of June 2003.]

Bellevue, WA -- GSM is the technology selected by 43% of all new digital wireless customers in the Americas, making it the #1 choice of all mobile technologies -- after showing substantial growth for the second quarter of 2003. 3G Americas reports a year of solid growth for GSM in the Western Hemisphere, topping the charts with a 78% annual growth rate from June 2002 to June 2003, the highest annual growth of any mobile technology based on the statistical evidence of the EMC World Cellular Database.

According to the latest figures from EMC world cellular database nstatistics on AUgust 8, 2003, GSM grew 132% in Latin America and the Caribbean in a one-year period as of June 2003. Brazil alone added one million new GSM customers in the second quarter and a total of 1.5 million new customers from the beginning of the year, representing nearly half of the new mobile customers in the country, with TDMA as a close second and CDMA a distant third place. Mexico reached 1.5 million GSM customers as of June 2003, with GSM as the #1 wireless choice in Mexico in second quarter 2003, representing 66% of all new mobile customers in the country. In the same quarter, 16.7% of new mobile customers in Mexico respectively selected TDMA or CDMA.

According to Erasmo Rojas, Director of Latin America and the Caribbean for 3G Americas, "Every country in Latin America and the Caribbean, with the sole exception of Haiti, has GSM today or will soon have GSM services. From June 2002 to June 2003, 18 operators launched GSM networks in 12 countries and that pace will only quicken as an additional 31 operators expect to launch GSM services in 20 countries in the region by the end of this year." Rojas added, "GSM deployments now blanket the Americas region and the growth of customers demonstrates that GSM is the best technology for evolution to next generation services."

GSM also outpaced other wireless technologies in the U.S. and Canada from June 2002-June 2003 with a 57% annual growth rate. This rate is close to three times more than the growth of CDMA in the region. With three national TDMA operators, AT&T Wireless and Cingular Wireless in the U.S. and Rogers Wireless in Canada, choosing the GSM evolution to next generation wireless data services, the shift is beginning from TDMA to GSM. For the first time, the number of TDMA customers in North America declined by one percent in the second quarter of 2003 exemplifying the move of customers from TDMA to GSM.

On a global basis, more than 174 million customers in over 200 countries chose GSM in the same one-year period -- more customers than the total of any other wireless technology and nearly 82% of all new wireless customers in the world. At the end of the first half of 2003, there were 880 million total GSM customers worldwide.

Chris Pearson, Executive Vice President of 3G Americas commented, "In addition to the phenomenal growth of GSM coverage and customers in the Americas region, we are seeing global deployments and commercial launches of EDGE for the delivery next generation wireless data services. Industry analysts and vendors have forecast that 85% of the world's mobile customers will use GSM/GPRS/EDGE and UMTS." Pearson continued, "EDGE momentum continues as EDGE is now commercially available in Indianapolis, Hong Kong and Finland, with a nationwide deployment expected in the U.S. before the end of the year."

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