TCL (Tariff Consultancy Ltd), the experts in telecoms pricing worldwide, has published the latest edition of the 27TCL Global LTE Pricing Tariff Tracker subscription service, which shows the impact of new LTE (4G) on pricing in the fourth quarter of 2013.
Over the last quarter, TCL has included updated LTE pricing from 130 operators in more than 70 countries worldwide – with particular growth in new services seen from the South American region.
Eight South American operators have launched commercial LTE (4G) services in Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Paraguay and Uruguay.
In more established markets, LTE operators are also reducing the price for existing LTE services – particularly in France, where LTE services are being charged at the same level as 3G data.
Additionally a number of operators offer selective price discounts or bundles as part of an LTE promotion, including the UK where an option to subscribe to either Spotify Premium or Sky Sports Mobile with a 4G contract offers a free period ranging from six months up to 24 months.
Additionally, some LTE operators are now introducing pre-pay services in selected markets, including Everything Everywhere (UK) launching pre-pay LTE in the last quarter.
Another trend is the introduction of LTE as a low cost “add on” – with TIM (Italy) for example charging an additional Euro 5 per month for its 4G Internet Plus product, which allows theoretical download speeds of up to 70Mbps with the existing user data allowance.
The Q4-13 TCL Global LTE Pricing Tariff Tracker also segmented LTE pricing (for Post Pay LTE for PC or laptop connectivity) into six main geographical regions around the world.
It said: "Average LTE pricing in the EU is $34.89 per month (average monthly data allowance of almost 20GB) and is the lowest of the six regions surveyed by TCL.”
The launch of new LTE services is set to continue into 2014, with developing markets in Asia, South America and the Middle East preparing for the commercial launch of new 4G networks.
Pricing for LTE services continues to develop rapidly. And operators are now experimenting with the bundling of additional content with LTE 4G services in order to attract new users as an alternative to price discounting into 2014.