Penetration of mobile telephony in Costa Rica reached 156% in 2015.
Penetration of mobile telephony in Costa Rica reached 156% in 2015.

QCOSTARICA – In the past decade, Costa Rica has seen an increase in the mobile telephony penetration rate, from 33% in 2006 when the state telecom, Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) was the only provider, to 156% in 2015, as three operators vie for market share.

The penetration last year was 5% more than in 2014, according to data published by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Telecommunications (Ministerio de Ciencia y Tecnología de Costa Rica – MICITT).

The information is based on information provided by the three major operators: ICE (Kolbi), Telefonica (Movistar) and America Movil (Claro); and resellers Cable Tica (Tuyo Movil) and RACSA (Fullmovil), a division of ICE.

According to International Telecommunication Union (ITU) data for 2014, only five Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries had higher mobile penetration rates than Costa Rica: Estonia, Italy, Austria, Luxembourg and Poland.

Among Latin American countries, Costa Rica is surpassed by Suriname, Uruguay, Argentina and Panama.