PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago-Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago Ltd. announced plans to launch third-generation mobile broadband services in Trinidad and Tobago to residential and commercial customers via Nortel Networks Ltd.’s CDMA2000 1X and 1x EV-DO wireless technology.
Trinidad and Tobago is a West Indian country with more than 1 million residents living on about 200 square miles of land. Port-of-Spain is the capital city of the country made up of two islands, hence the country’s name, Trinidad and Tobago.
TSTT is the country’s leading telecommunications provider, and Nortel is TSTT’s sole supplier for wireless infrastructure equipment. Terms of the agreement between Nortel and TSTT were not disclosed.
Pyramid Research said that Trinidad and Tobago recently opened its telecommunications market, representing one of the last Caribbean markets to open its sector to competition, leaving the Bahamas as the only other closed market in the region.
The research firm noted that the entrance of Digicel, which operates in Jamaica, and a third mobile operator, Laqtel, is likely to take significant market share away from incumbent TSTT.
Trinidad and Tobago, according the market-research firm, is shaping up to be the next battleground between Irish-owned Digicel and Cable & Wireless, which owns a majority stake in TSTT.
“The current situation in Trinidad and Tobago is similar to that of Jamaica in 2001 when Digicel and another minor operator entered a market controlled by Cable & Wireless and severely eroded the incumbent’s market share,” said Thomas Abreu, analyst at Pyramid Research. “While Digicel is unlikely to grab market leadership in less than two years, as it did in Jamaica, I do expect the challenger’s impact to be significant.”
The research firm said that the country’s newly founded telecom regulator has been active and efficient throughout its one-year tenure and may extend its liberalizing efforts into other segments, including broadcasting. Trinidad & Tobago may turn out to be a small but interesting and dynamic telecom market.