In common with other Scandinavian countries, Norway has a sophisticated telecom market with high broadband and mobile penetration rates and a highly developed digital media sector. The country’s telecoms sector is synchronised with relevant EC legislation. Telenor is the dominant operator in all sectors, though there is increasing competition from new entrants and established players. Consolidation among operators has seen TeliaSonera increase its market share by acquiring the operations of Tele2, and renaming its local mobile division Netcom as Telia in March 2016, while NextGenTel Holding now incorporates Telio.

Norway’s broadband penetration rate is among the highest in Europe, the result of government and telco efforts to migrate subscribers to superfast broadband services provided by fibre networks, VDSL and upgraded cable infrastructure. The leading ISPs Telenor and NextGenTel have trialled technology with a view to a commercial launch of services by the end of 2016.
The mobile market is dominated by Telenor Mobil and TeliaSonera’s rebranded Telia division (formerly Netcom before being rebranded in March 2016). The joint venture Mobile Norway was part-owned by Tele2 until Tele2’s failure to secure spectrum at auction in December 2013 led the company to sell its Norwegian operations. This directly benefitted the new entrant, owned by AINMT Holdings, which did secure spectrum at auction and which gained Network Norway’s customer base as part of the deal enforced by the telecom regulator. Voice and data services from these operators are supplemented by those from a growing number of MVNOs.

The market is well advanced in LTE developments, with both Telenor and Telia spearheading networks in the region. Both operators are looking to close down their 3G and 2G networks (by 2020 and 2025 respectively), focussing instead of developing LTE and the forthcoming 5G technologies, while providing mobile voice using VoLTE. Telia offers an LTE-A service providing 300Mb/s to about 1.5 million Norwegians, while it has also achieved 1Gb/s data rates using quad-band carrier aggregation technology as a precursor to 5G.

For more information see – Norway - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Digital Media - Statistics and Analyses