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Alternative DSL Players Gain in Europe

By the end of the second quarter 2005 the number of broadband subscribers in Europe had exceeded 50 million for the first time, according to latest research into the broadband market by Informa Telecoms & Media. DSL now accounts for more than 80 percent of all broadband subscriptions in Europe. But while growth in the market remains steady, incumbents in Europe�s 10 major European markets saw their share of the retail DSL market drop towards the 50 percent mark.

By the end of June 2005, incumbents� market share of the retail DSL market dropped from 64 percent to 57 percent. Over the same period the number of unbundled lines more than doubled from less than 2.5 million to over 6 million indicating a more favourable regulatory environment across Europe and a resulting increased willingness from alternative carriers to install equipment in the incumbent�s exchange.

The largest drop in market share was experienced by the Finnish operator TeliaSonera which saw its share of the retail DSL market drop 17 percent from 76 percent to 69 percent. Deutsche Telekom saw a similar reduction (12 percent) in its retail market share. France, where low wholesale DSL rates encouraged the competition up to two years ago, saw a smaller reduction in its market share. France Telecom�s retail market share dropped from 48 percent to 47 percent.

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