MTS blog


NETWORK DEVELOPMENT IN 2014

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

In 2014, we expanded our network by 20% through the installation of 15,000 3G and LTE base stations. By the end of the year, MTS launched LTE networks in 76 of Russia’s 85 regions. 

 

During the year, we continued to enhance our 2G and 3G networks and realized total population coverage of 98% by the end of the year. Over 80% of 3G base stations on our network now deliver speeds of 42 Mb/s, the fastest data transfer speed commercially available, through the deployment of Dual-Cell HSPA+. The remaining 3G base stations run on HSPA+ standard and deliver speeds up to 21 Mb/s.

 

In 2014, mobile data traffic on MTSs networks increased 1.7 times in Russia. The highest growth in the mobile traffic consumption was registered in the North-West and Moscow regions, where traffic grew 2.2 and 2 times respectively. In Moscow, the volume of the LTE traffic increased 13 times year-over-year due to network development and growing penetration of LTE-enabled smartphones, tablets and dongles. The traffic growth was also aided by Apples decision to enable LTE-TDD network for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models, as well as older iPhone 5S and 5C models.

 

The total length of our fiber-optic lines reached 160,000 km in 2014. The increase was driven by the construction of long distance lines in the regions and the aggressive build-out of the Gigabit-capable Passive Optic Network (GPON) in Moscow, where the total length of the lines increased to 40,000 km. GPON is capable of delivering high-speed broadband and digital TV to 3.5 million Moscow households. During the year the number of the households passed doubled while the volume of internet traffic on our network increased by 45%.

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INTERNATIONAL ROAMING DURING NEW YEAR HOLIDAYS

Friday, January 23, 2015

With the holiday period behind us, we decided to analyze how usage patterns of customers travelling abroad changed this season. One key trend we witnessed was an overall lower usage of voice and SMS in international roaming, which was driven mainly by a fall in the number of Russian tourists traveling abroad. Nevertheless, overall usage of mobile data increased due to the greater adoption of smartphones and more frequent utilization of tariffs that provide a fixed price per day, which allows subscribers to better control data roaming expenses.

 

We compared usage trends when roaming from 15th December 2014 to 15th January 2015 to the same period last year.  During this period, the number of international roamers declined by 25%, the volume of calls decreased by 26% and the volume of sent SMS fell by 28%.  At the same time, the number of smartphones used in the roaming abroad grew 1.5 times and the volume of the roaming data traffic increased by 23%.  Likely, this implies a greater usage of social media and OTT solutions at the expense of voice and messaging services, a trend we see both at home and abroad.

    

Those who travelled abroad actually broadened their Internet usage from essential browsing (e.g. maps, tourist guides and email) to more traffic-intensive use of social media and entertainment sites. The proportion of Internet traffic for social purposes during this time almost matched essential browsing traffic, reaching 30% and 35% respectively. This is another illustration of how social media use on smartphones is moving deeper into our customer segments regardless of their location.

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REPORT ON MOBILE RETAIL MARKET, Q3 2014

Monday, December 29, 2014

We have issued a report on mobile retail in Russia during Q3, based on the estimates from our mobile retail network.

Highlights from the report:

- In Q3 2014, the number of phones sold in Russia increased by 5.2% compared to Q3 2013 with 12.26 mln devices sold

- In Q3 2014, the mobile handset market in Russia expanded by 12.1% in sales compared to Q3 2013 to reach RUB 67.99 bln

- In Q3 2014, the smartphone market increased by 38.7% compared to Q3 2013 with 7.51 mln smartphones sold

- In Q3 2014, the smartphone market expanded by 21.9% in terms of sales compared to Q3 2013 to reach RUB 60.10 bln

Please download the complete report here

Retail Report Q3_2014.pdf (1.58 mb)

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Mobile | Retail, devices | Russia

SPEEDTEST RESULTS FOR WIRELESS DATA NETWORK SPEEDS IN Q3 2014

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

We are pleased to share recently published results of measurements taken by mobile subscribers throughout Russia using the popular application ‘Speedtest’, which was developed by Ookla. Based on over 1.8 million measurements conducted from July to September 2014, MTS has once again demonstrated its leadership in network speeds across Russia. The average downlink speed registered on MTS’s 2G/3G/LTE networks across Russia during Q3 2014 was 20% higher than the average of its competitors.  The results further demonstrate that MTS operates the fastest LTE networks in Moscow with an average downlink speed of 20.3 MB/s, while MTS subscribers in areas ranging from St Petersburg to the Urals and the Far East enjoy faster network speeds relative to their peers on other networks.

 

You can download the Q3 report below and see a link to our previous report on Speedtest measurements in this post.

Speedtest_v1_14-III (3).pdf (142.17 kb)

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SUBSCRIBER NUMBERS FOR Q3 2014

Wednesday, December 03, 2014
Subscribers (mln)September 30,  2014 

June 30,  2014

Growth
Subs
Growth
%
Total consolidated subscribers, mln 99.83 96.74 3.09 3.2%
Russia 73.25 70.61 2.65 3.8%
Ukraine* 22.73 22.31 0.42 1.9%
Armenia 2.15 2.12 0.03 1.3%
Turkmenistan 1.69 1.70 (0.01) (0.5%)
MTS Belarus** 5.31 5.26 0.05 0.9%

 


Subscriber data for Russian mobile operators is compiled by Advanced Communications and Media, a management consulting and research agency specializing in telecommunications and media. You can view their Q3 2014 subscriber report here.  In Q3 2014, MTS adjusted its subscriber methodology to reflects three-months of subscriber activity instead of previously used six-months methodology. Numbers for the previous periods have been retrospectively adjusted.

 

* Including CDMA subscribers
** MTS owns a 49% stake in Mobile TeleSystems LLC, a mobile operator in Belarus, which is not consolidated.

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INTERNATIONAL ROAMING REPORT, Q3 2014

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

We have recently published a report which looks into patterns of data usage in roaming. 

Highlights of the report include:

Over 38% of the traffic in international roaming is generated by maps and travel applications.

Access to social networks, including posting videos and photos, accounts for 28% of traffic. 

19% of traffic is consumed by reading emails and 10% by internet browsing.  

Over the first nine months of 2014, MTS saw an increase in the number of roamers in countries, which rank among the most popular 

holiday destinations for Russians.

You can download the full report below.

 

141105_MTS_Roaming_Report.pdf (616.50 kb)

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M2M REPORT, Q3 2014

Thursday, October 30, 2014

We have recently released a new report on M2M (machine-to-machine) market in Russia for the first nine months of 2014. 

You can download the report below.

Q314_M2M_Report (3).pdf (748.26 kb)

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REPORT ON MOBILE TRAFFIC

Monday, October 20, 2014

We are pleased to share with you a new report on the structure of the mobile traffic we produced using MTS’s proprietary data for the first nine months of 2014. Some of the findings include: 

Over the last year, the share of traffic generated by smartphones in the total traffic increased from 25% to 33%, while the share of traffic generated by USB modems declined from 50% to 42%;

Social networks account for 11% of the traffic on mobile networks; 

MTS customers consume traffic in a way very similar to European users.

Click below to read the full report.

141020_Mobile_Traffic.pdf (836.49 kb)

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SMALL CELLS TO HAVE MAJOR IMPACT ON NETWORK SPEEDS

Monday, October 20, 2014

MTS recently launched an initiative to dramatically increase speeds of our networks in major cities through the deployment of small cells.

Small cells are low powered short range base stations which complement service from larger macrocells and are used to offload traffic from 3G and LTE networks. We plan to install thousands of small cells in areas where demand is strongest for mobile Internet, including business centers, shopping malls, airports, railway stations, parks, pedestrian areas, and even busy crossroads. This will enable us to enhance the capacity of our LTE networks and ramp up data transfer speeds. Small cells with an operating range of 100-150 meters active in the 2.6 Ghz range will connect to MTS’s fiber-optic lines and offload traffic from LTE networks.

In the summer of 2014, MTS launched pilot projects for testing small cells in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Small cells installed in the areas of concentration of the subscribers delivered a 10% increase in coverage and a 20% increase in network capacity and consumed traffic. Following the success of the pilot projects, we decided to continue the roll-out of small cells in Moscow and St. Petersburg and deploy them in other big cities in Russia, including Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, Nizhniy Novgorod and Kazan.   

In order to further increase capacity and LTE speeds, MTS also is preparing to deploy carrier aggregation technology. Earlier this year, MTS became the first company in Russia and the third company globally to have completed testing of carrier aggregation technology over 30 MHz of bandwidth spanning the 1800 MHz and the 2600 MHz ranges.

 

Currently, MTS’s LTE networks are active in 56 regions throughout Russia. Through the end of this year, MTS will cover 600 population centers across Russia.

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MTS SUSTAINS LEADERSHIP IN THE B2G MARKET

Thursday, October 09, 2014

In H1 2014, MTS sustained its leadership in the Russian mobile services B2G market. During the period the number of government agencies using MTS’s mobile, convergent and fixed-line services increased by 35% year-over-year. The Company’s success in the government tenders reflects its investments in the development of next-generation networks throughout Russia, and Company’s ability to develop tailored products for its current and prospective customers. MTS also benefited from an inflow of customers in the government sector as a result of the introduction of Mobile Number Portability in 2014.

In H1 2014, MTS signed contracts with the Ministry of Public Administration, IT and Telecommunications of the Moscow region and St. Petersburg Committee for Development of Information Technologies and Telecommunications, among others. Most recently, MTS renewed its contract with the State Duma which has been MTS’s customer since 2008.

In 2013-2014, MTS installed and upgraded over 1,500 base stations, femtocells and indoor solutions to improve network quality and coverage for corporate and government customers. Over 30% of the upgrades were made as a part of MTS’s investment program to enhance network performance for prospective customers. Overall, MTS remains the market leader in the Russian B2B sector with a 40% market share by subscribers as of Q1 2014, according to a recent report by Advanced Communications & Media (AC&M), a leading Moscow-based management consulting and research agency specialized in telecommunications and media.

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Recent Tweets

Follow me, Josh Tulgan, MTS Director for Corporate Finance and Investor Relations, on twitter

Twitter January 27, 19:26
MTS launches Rich Communications Services throughout Russia, aims to increase data penetration in sub base http://t.co/0XEpstf7hO

Twitter January 27, 18:05
In Moscow MTS GPON network reaches 40,000 km in 2014; over 3.5 mln households passed $MBT http://t.co/z7yTclm0YW

Twitter January 27, 18:04
In Moscow MTS LTE users increase data consumption by 13x! $MBT http://t.co/vdwtaLl5L6

Twitter January 27, 18:03
In 2014 MTS installs over 15,000 new bts; total fiber network over 160,000 km and over 98% of pop covered in Russia http://t.co/vnDioZ3CZO

Twitter January 27, 18:02
New blog post on MTS network development in 2014; 80% of bts deliver speeds of 42 Mb/s thru DC-HSPA+ $MBT http://t.co/SH3qEc5TOe

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