Figures released by the state-owned mobile phone networks Alfa and Touch show that there were four million mobile phone subscriptions in Lebanon at the end of June 2014. Touch has 2.1 million mobile phone subscriptions, representing a 53% market share: while Alfa has 1.9 million subscriptions and a 47% share. In parallel, there were 2.35 million subscriptions to data services at the end of June 2014, equivalent to about 60% of mobile phone subscriptions. Touch has 1.3 million subscriptions to data services it provides, equivalent to about 62% of its total mobile phone subscriptions: while Alfa has 1.05 million subscriptions to its data services, or about 55% of its total mobile subscription base. Further. Alfa indicated that 70% of its mobile phone subscribers have a Smartphone. The Kuwaiti mobile telecommunications provider Zain has been running Touch since June 2004 and the Cairo-based Global Telecom Holding has been managing Alfa since January 2008.
The Ministry of Telecommunications lowered the tariffs on mobile phone services starting in June 2014. It reduced call tariffs for pre-paid mobile subscribers by 30.6% from $0.36 per minute to $0.25 and lowered the cost of text messaging by 44.4% from $0.09 per message to $0.05. Also, postpaid mobile subscribers started receiving an extra 60 minutes of call time as part of their $15 monthly subscription fee. Further, the ministry doubled or tripled subscribers' mobile 3G capacity, but maintained current prices unchanged, which effectively amounts to a reduction in rates.
Lebanon This Week – Byblos Bank