The French mobile market grew by 1.2 million Sim cards in the fourth quarter of 2013 and by 3.6 million in the year to reach 76.6 million at the end of December, according to telecom regulator ARCEP. The penetration rate rose by 1.9 percentage points in the quarter to 117.1 percent. Excluding M2M penetration grew by 1.3 points to 106.6 percent.
Postpaid customers increased by 1.1 million in the quarter to reach 54.2 million, M2M grew by 400,000 accounts to 6.9 million, prepaid lines dropped by 266,000 in the quarter and by 14.3 percent over the year to 15.5 million. In continental France and Corsica (Metropole) there were 74 million Sim cards in service at the end of December, with MNOs adding 1 million in the quarter to reach 65.9 million, and MNOs adding 200,000 to take the tally to 8.1 million.
The MNO market share inched up to 10.9 percent in the fourth quarter from 10.8 percent in the third. This indicator has been stable for the last 2 years, despite the market entry of Free Mobile. The proportion of accounts without a contract tie-in period (no-commitment) rose by 3 points in the quarter to reach nearly 44 percent.
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